Prostate cancer screening with prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test: A clinical practice guideline
Tikkinen, Kari A.O.; Dahm, Philipp; Lytvyn, Lyubov; Heen, Anja Fog; Vernooij, Robin W.M.; Siemieniuk, Reed A.C.; Wheeler, Russell; Vaughan, Bill; Fobuzi, Awah Cletus; Blanker, Marco H.; Junod, Noelle; Sommer, Johanna; Stirnemann, Jérôme; Yoshimura, Manabu; Auer, Reto; MacDonald, Helen; Guyatt, Gordon; Vandvik, Per Olav; Agoritsas, Thomas
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionBMJ . 2018 Sep 5;362:k3581. doi: 10.1136/bmj.k3581. 10.1136/bmj.k3581
What is the role of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening in prostate cancer? An expert panel produced these recommendations based on a linked systematic review.1 The review was triggered by a large scale, cluster randomised trial on PSA screening in men without a previous diagnosis of prostate cancer published in 2018 (box 1).2 It found no difference between one-time PSA screening and standard practice in prostate cancer mortality but found an increase in the detection of low risk prostate cancer after a median follow-up of 10 years. Although the results of this study suggest screening is not worthwhile, several guidelines advocate offering screening in some cases. The study was much larger than previous studies, and existing trials had published more extended follow-up results, and the BMJ Rapid Recommendations team felt these merited a new appraisal of the body of evidence. This guideline aims to promptly and transparently translate potentially practice-changing evidence to usable recommendations for clinicians and patients, based on the GRADE framework and following standards for trustworthy guidelines. The panel suggests against systematic PSA screening (weak recommendation). The panel members judged that most men will decline screening because the benefit is small and uncertain and there are clear harms. However, there is likely considerable variation in values and preferences. Men with family history of prostate cancer, African descent or of lower socioeconomic status, having higher baseline risk of prostate cancer death, may be more likely to choose PSA screening. Shared decision-making is needed for men considering screening. Box 2 shows all of the articles and evidence linked in this Rapid Recommendation package. The main infographic provides an overview of the absolute benefits and harms of PSA screening. The table at the end of the article shows any evidence that has emerged since the publication of this guideline.