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J Urol. 1998 Feb;159(2):444-8.

Age specific prostate specific antigen reference ranges: population specific.

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1
Department of Urology, State University of New York Health Science Center, Brooklyn, USA.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

We determined whether 60 to 79-year-old men with a negative digital rectal examination and a serum prostate specific antigen (PSA) within age specific PSA reference ranges could safely forgo prostate biopsy.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

We reviewed the medical records of all 60 to 79-year-old men at the Brooklyn Veterans Administration Medical Center who had a PSA assay, digital rectal examination and subsequent prostate biopsy for an abnormal rectal examination and/or PSA greater than 4.0 ng./ml. from January 1991 through August 1995. We compared our results using the standard reference range of 0 to 4.0 ng./ml. with those obtained had we used any of 4 different age specific PSA reference ranges.

RESULTS:

We performed 1,280 prostate biopsies in 1,046 men with available PSA and digital rectal examination data. Using age specific PSA reference ranges 73 of 1,280 biopsies (5.7%) would have been avoided. Of those 73 avoided biopsies 15 (20.5%) had cancer that would have gone undetected and 9 of 15 (60%) undetected cancers had unfavorable histology. Results were not statistically significantly different among the 4 age specific PSA reference ranges. Regarding race, cancer detection rates were significantly higher for black compared with white men but there was no statistically significant difference for missed cancers or missed cancers with unfavorable histology.

CONCLUSIONS:

In contrast to previous reports of unfavorable histological characteristics in only 5% of missed cancers using age specific PSA reference ranges, 60% of missed cancers in our patients exhibited unfavorable histology. We conclude that age specific PSA reference ranges did not safely eliminate the need for prostate biopsy in our study population. In 60 to 79-year-old men with a negative digital rectal examination we continue to use PSA greater than 4.0 ng./ml. as an indication for prostate biopsy.

PMID:
9649260
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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