PSA Screening: Discourage or Recommend?

Posted by Karen Buckley • October 27th, 2011

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force issued a draft recommendation earlier this month that men with no symptoms of prostate cancer should not be screened with the PSA test.  There has been debate about PSA screening for as long as it has existed, and that continues today.  On NEJM.org we have published the views of several expert clinicians on this controversial issue.

  • Dr. Allan Brett, a clinician from the University of South Carolina School of Medicine who has discussed the pros and cons of PSA screening with hundreds of patients over the last two decades, and Dr. Richard Ablin from the University of Arizona College of Medicine, who discovered PSA in 1970, agree fully with the task force’s analysis, but outline three issues that the panel did not address.
  • Drs. Mary McNaughton-Collins and Michael Barry are two physicians from Massachusetts General Hospital who argue that the recommendation should allow patients to be involved in the decision of whether or not to screen.
  • Dr. Fritz Schröder of Erasmus University Medical Center and international coordinator for the European Randomized Study of Screening for Prostate Cancer writes that the draft report has a number of key weaknesses.
  • Dr. Richard Hoffman from the University of New Mexico School of Medicine and the New Mexico Veterans Affairs Health Care System reviews the current recommendations for PSA testing and the process for decision making in a Clinical Practice article.

On each article page you can post a comment.  You can also cast your vote in a poll about the new USPSTF proposal.  We invite you to comment, vote, and join the discussion.

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