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Blood test could show cancer risk

A single blood test for men aged 60 could identify those most likely to develop and die from prostate cancer, new research has suggested. Prostate cancer screening is used in certain countries, but remains open to debate with medical experts weighing up the benefits of screening against the potential harms and costs of over-diagnosis and over-treatment of healthy men.

Prostate cancer screening is used in certain countries, but remains open to debate with medical experts weighing up the benefits of screening against the potential harms and costs of over-diagnosis and over-treatment of healthy men.

Professor Philipp Dahm and colleagues at the University of Florida reviewed six previous screening trials involving 387,286 participants.

They found routine screening aided the diagnosis of prostate cancer at an earlier stage, but did not have a significant impact on death rates and raised the risk of over-treatment.

A second study showed a single "prostate-specific antigen" (PSA) level test at age 60 strongly predicted a man's risk of diagnosis and death from prostate cancer.


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