The Importance Of Accurate Diagnosis
Over the past several years, increases in the reported incidence of prostate cancer have been disproportionate to the changes in the population demographics.The main reason for this rapid rise may be the easy access to PSA (blood test)and subsequent ultrasound guided biopsies (random biopsy).
Mass screening efforts present a dilemma for the patients and the clinicians. Although saving many lives, screenings also pick up so called “latent” or“insignificant” tumors that may not need any treatment.
It is reported that 15 to 20 percent of patients who have a radical prostatectomy may have been exposed to unnecessary surgery and related post-surgical complications. Screenings are justifiable and treatments are usually effective when either slow-growing progressive cancers (which will become symptomatic and can kill) or rapidly progressing (very malignant cancers that are likely to kill) are detected. Unfortunately, it is difficult to predict how a prostate cancer will progress. The individual patient and his physician must weigh the possibly deleterious effects of screening against the possible benefits.
For these two reasons, an accurate diagnosis is of utmost importance. The key to an accurate diagnosis with the highest chance of survival is early detection.