The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force Updates Screening Guidelines for Prostate Cancer

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recently updated their prostate screening recommendations.

On April 11, 2017, the USPSTF issued an updated draft recommendation on screening for prostate cancer.  The updated recommendation changes the grade for PSA-based screening from “D” to “C” for men 55 – 69 years of age.  As a result, the USPSTF now recommends that clinicians discuss with men aged 55 to 69 what the potential benefits and harms of prostate screening entail.  For men aged 70 years and older, the USPSTF maintains its “D” recommendation that 70 and older should not be screened for prostate cancer.  Previous USPSTF recommendations (May 2012) were against PSA-based screening for prostate cancer, regardless of age.

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 American Urological Association (AUA), the leading advocate for the specialty of urology with more than 21,000 members worldwide, commended the USPSTF for upgrading its recommendation for screening among men 55 to 69 years of age.

“The draft recommendations are thoughtful and reasonable, and are in direct alignment with the AUA’s clinical practice guideline and guidelines from most other major physician groups,” said Richard K. Babayan, M.D., AUA President.

SSM Health Cancer Care knows that early detection is one of the most important factors to surviving cancer.  Regular screenings are critical to successfully diagnosing and treating cancer.  SSM Health physicians offer free prostate cancer screenings to eligible men and no appointment is necessary.

For information on free prostate cancer screenings offered by SSM Health, please click here.