Tags: Cancer | prostate | cancer | aggressive | misdiagnosis | false

Men With Prostate Cancer Falsely Told It Is Not Aggressive

By    |   Friday, 11 April 2014 03:39 PM

Standard tests used to gauge the aggressiveness of prostate cancer have been shown to underestimate the severity of the disease in half the men whose tumors are classified as "slow growing."

The findings, published in the British Journal of Cancer, suggest that many men are falsely led to believe their cancers should not be treated aggressively — and are typically advised to merely monitor their disease without undergoing surgery or radiation — putting them at risk.
 
University of Cambridge researchers reviewed the staging and grading of cancer in more than 800 men before and after they had surgery to remove their prostates. The results showed 209 of the men whose cancer was classified as slow growing (about half) after a biopsy actually tumors that were aggressive and likely to spread beyond the prostate and become life-threatening than originally thought.

About a third (131) had cancer that had spread beyond the prostate, according to a Medical Xpress report on the research.
 
"Our results show that the severity of up to half of men's prostate cancers may be underestimated when relying on tests before they have surgery," said Greg Shaw, a urological surgeon and one of the study authors based at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute.
 
"This highlights the urgent need for better tests to define how aggressive a prostate cancer is from the outset, building on diagnostic tests like MRI scans and new biopsy techniques which help to more accurately define the extent of the prostate cancer. This would then enable us to counsel patients with more certainty whether the prostate cancer identified is suitable for active surveillance or not."
 
Shaw added that while active surveillance — sometimes called "watchful waiting" — would seem to be a safe approach for some men, "nearly a third will end up needing surgery or radiotherapy within five years."
 
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men and is typically assessed using biopsies, MRI, and PSA tests.

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Standard tests used to gauge the aggressiveness of prostate cancer have been shown to underestimate the severity of the disease in half the men whose tumors are classified as 'slow growing.'
prostate, cancer, aggressive, misdiagnosis, false
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2014-39-11
Friday, 11 April 2014 03:39 PM
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