About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us

Surgery May Not be Best Option for Elderly With Prostate Cancer

by VR Sreeraman on September 16, 2009 at 1:56 PM
Font : A-A+

 Surgery May Not be Best Option for Elderly With Prostate Cancer

Surgery or radiation treatments may not be the best choice for most older men diagnosed with prostate cancer, a study published Tuesday has found.

That's because conservative management strategies, deferring treatment until the disease progresses, do not appear to be as risky as previously thought, according to the study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.


A number of previous studies have found that early, aggressive treatment does not seem to substantially improve mortality rates among men over the age of 65.

However, conservative management strategies are only used in about 10 percent of cases of the often slow-moving disease, which usually strikes late in life.

"Coupled with data showing that the lifetime risk of being diagnosed with prostate cancer is about 17 percent while the corresponding risk of dying of this disease is only about three percent, the evidence suggests that conservative management may be an important treatment consideration for the sizable majority of men diagnosed with localized prostate cancer," wrote lead author Grace Lu-Yao of the Cancer Institute of New Jersey.

Using data from Medicare insurance files, Lu-Yao's team was able to follow 14,516 men diagnosed with prostate cancer whose cases were managed without surgery or radiation for at least six months after diagnosis.

The data covers approximately 97 percent of the US population aged 65 and older and Lu-Yao's team was able to follow the cases for a median of 8.3 years by looking at men diagnosed from 1992 through 2002.

The survival rates were substantially better than in studies of cancers detected before 1992, when use of the early-detection prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test became common. That test allows for the detection of prostate cancer six to 13 years before it presents clinically.

Those older studies found the chance of dying within 10 years from prostate cancer to be 15 to 23 percent among men aged 66 to 74 diagnosed with moderately differentiated tumors who pursued conservative management.

The mortality rate was just six percent among those diagnosed at the same age and stage of the disease in this latest, large scale study.

And the survival rate of 94 percent was actually better than the 90 percent recorded in previous studies for a similar population of men who pursued aggressive treatment.

"The substantial improvement in survival that we observed in our study compared with previous reports might be explained, in part, by additional lead time, overdiagnosis related to PSA testing," changes in the way tumors are graded and advancements in medical care, the authors wrote.

Source: AFP

News A-Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Effect of Blood Group Type on COVID-19 Risk and Severity
Woman with Rare Spinal Cord Defect from Birth Sues Doctor
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Prostate Cancer Cancer and Homeopathy Trans-Urethral Resection of the Prostate Prostate Cancer Facts Cancer Facts Cancer Tattoos A Body Art Diseases Related to Old Age Prostate Cancer: Treatment Options Prostate Specific Antigen [PSA] 

Recommended Reading
Quiz on Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer is fast gaining as a common cancer form among men; more threatening since its ......
Location Of Prostate Gland - Animation
Interactive section of Medindia defines prostate gland location...
Surgery of prostate gland - Animation
Interactive section of Medindia gives information regarding Surgery of prostate gland...
Diseases Related to Old Age
Ageing is referred to the accumulation of changes that brings a person closer to death....
Prostate Cancer
This cancer affects men over the age of 50 years and screening with rectal examination and PSA can h...
Prostate Cancer: Treatment Options
Treatment options of prostate cancer includes waiting, surgery, radiation, hormone therapy, chemothe...
Prostate Specific Antigen [PSA]
PSA blood test is specific to prostate gland but not necessarily a cancer specific test but is commo...
Tattoos A Body Art
Tattoos are a rage among college students who sport it for the ‘cool dude’ or ‘cool babe’ look...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use