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    Guarded approval for new USPSTF PSA grade

    Grade D recommendation for men ≥70 years criticized

    Bob GattyBob GattyThe new draft recommendation on PSA screening from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), which improves the previous D rating for all men to a C rating for those ages 55 to 69 years, has been met with guarded approval by three of the key national organizations representing urologists.

    The AUA, LUGPA, and the American Association of Clinical Urologists (AACU) joined several other advocacy groups in responding to the statement; see bit.ly/USPSTFstatement.

    The new recommendation, which maintains a D rating for men ages 70 years and older, was posted April 11 at www.screeningforprostatecancer.org with comments invited until May 8.

    Also by Bob Gatty: AUA pursues revised priorities on Capitol Hill

    “Through its systematic review of the evidence, the task force determined that the potential benefits and harms of prostate-specific antigen (PSA)-based screening are closely balanced in men ages 55 to 69, and that the decision about whether to be screened should be an individual one,” the USPSTF said in a news release. “Clinicians should talk to men ages 55 to 69 about the potential benefits and harms of screening. This is a C recommendation.”

    For men ages 70 years and older, the USPSTF said, “The potential benefits of PSA-based screening do not outweigh the harms, and these men should not be screened for prostate cancer. This is a D recommendation.”

    The draft recommendation applies to adult men who have not been previously diagnosed with prostate cancer and have no signs or symptoms of the disease. It also applies to men at average risk and men who are at increased risk, such as African American men and those with a family history of prostate cancer. The USPSTF also called for additional research on prostate cancer risk in African-American men and men with a family history of the disease.

    Next - Dr. Penson: ‘A major change’ for task force

    Bob Gatty
    Bob Gatty, a former congressional aide, covers news from Washington for Urology Times.

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