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Dr. Kukreja on ACS prostate cancer data


"The reason that we really focus on prostate cancer is because it's amenable to early screening. Early detection is key in cure," says Janet Kukreja, MD, MPH, FACS.

In this video, Janet Kukreja, MD, MPH, FACS, discusses prostate cancer data from the Cancer Statistics, 2023 report from the American Cancer Society. Kukreja is an associate professor of urology at the University of Colorado Urology in Boulder.


Every year, we look forward to the American Cancer Society putting out the most recent statistics. What I want to start with when we're talking about prostate cancer is taking a look at this slide. Here we see the estimated new cases. Prostate cancer is the leading cancer diagnosis for men. It made up 29% of the cancer diagnoses. The estimated number of prostate cancer deaths makes up about 11% of the cancer deaths. We're looking at a very significant cancer here. Our primary care providers were taught for many years to not check [prostate-specific antigen] levels, and with that, we really lost the early detection of prostate cancer for many years when they downgraded the recommendation for PSA testing in men 55 to 69. Fortunately, in 2018, that recommendation was reversed, and screening began again. But we really, I think, are seeing in this report, the data associated with the lack of PSA screening for some time. Something in this report that I found specifically very relevant was the recommendation for targeted clinical screening, specifically in Black men, in addition to the recommendation for biomarkers. In addition, we're seeing a higher overall incidence in Black men having cancer; specifically, they attribute that to prostate cancer, and it was noted that that was 70% higher than White men, which is actually quite a startling number. The reason that we really focus on prostate cancer is because it's amenable to early screening. Early detection is key in cure. And with this, we're seeing a slow decline in prostate cancer mortality. We know it takes about 10 to 15 years after treatment to see that, but we saw the mortality decline 3% to 4%, which was associated with the uptick in prostate cancer screening. In addition, we're seeing a decrease in advanced diagnosis by about 40% from 2007 to 2014, which is almost certainly because of PSA screening.

This transcript was edited for clarity.

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