Study rejects PSA screen

ANOTHER major study has failed to find compelling evidence in support of PSA screening for prostate cancer.

A randomised controlled trial involving 9000 men found PSA screening did not significantly reduce cancer mortality and suggested the risk for over-detection and over-treatment was considerable.

“After 20 years of follow-up, the rate of death from prostate cancer did not differ significantly between men in the screening group and those in the control group,” researchers said.

The trial, in which 1500 men were randomised to screening every third year, follows the publication of two major studies in 2009 that failed to show a clear risk/benefit from PSA screening over a shorter follow-up.

Professor Simon Chapman, director of research at the University of Sydney’s School of Public Health, said agencies “talking up” the importance of PSA testing were doing men a disservice.