Improved prostate cancer-specific survival and other disease parameters: impact of prostate-specific antigen testing.
OBJECTIVES: To determine how the implementation of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) testing has affected disease-specific survival and other characteristics of prostate cancer. METHODS: Data were collected on all patients with prostate cancer diagnosed between 1988 and 1998 and registered in the Center for Prostate Disease Research Database at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Statistical analyses were used to summarize trends over time in survival, mortality, and clinical stage. RESULTS: Between 1988 and 1998, a total of 2042 patients with prostate cancer were registered at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. The 5-year disease-specific survival rate was 86.9% and 93.7% for patients diagnosed in the respective year groups of 1988 to 1991 and 1992 to 1994, with follow-up through December 1, 2000 (P < 0.001). Prostate cancer was the cause of death for 37.5% of the patients in 1988 to 1989 versus 15.4% in 1999 to 2000. Marked stage migration has occurred; from 1988 to 1998, the percentage of patients presenting with metastatic disease decreased from 14.1% to 3.3% (P < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: A statistically significant improved 5-year disease-specific survival and a decreased chance of dying from prostate cancer has occurred after the widespread implementation of PSA. We suspect that PSA testing has resulted in fewer patients presenting with metastatic disease and more patients presenting with localized disease amenable to curative treatment. This portends well for the use of PSA screening to improve outcomes for prostate cancer. However, randomized trials are needed to confirm the improvements in survival and mortality.
Paquette, EL; Sun, L; Paquette, LR; Connelly, R; Mcleod, DG; Moul, JW
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