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Tag Archives: antigen screening

Prostate-specific Antigen Screening: A Primer for Residents and Medical Students

by Jonathan Klein, MD

Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Canadian men and their third-highest cause of cancer death 1. According to the Canadian Cancer Society, Canadian men carry a 14.3% lifetime chance of diagnosis and a 3.7% risk of dying from the disease 2.The discovery of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) in 1970 and subsequent development and approval of measurement assays for the compound have been the subject of immense hope that it could serve as a screening marker for the disease 3,4. However, the definitive answer as to PSA’s usefulness as a screening and detection mechanism for prostate cancer has been elusive and subject to much controversy. Indeed, a recent commentary in the New England Journal of Medicine labeled the PSA-screening debate “the controversy that refuses to die” 5.

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