Differentiating Molecular Risk Assessments of Prostate Cancer

Marc A. Bjurlin, DO
Published: Friday, Jan 26, 2018



Marc A. Bjurlin, DO, clinical assistant professor, Department of Urology, NYU Langone Medical Center, discusses differentiating molecular risk assessments for patients with prostate cancer.

According to Bjurlin, the way we screen for prostate cancer and detect cancer has changed significantly over the last several years. Traditionally, men with prostate cancer were screened with prostate specific antigen (PSA) serum blood tests, but it was found that it is quite a low specificity for detecting prostate cancer. As a result, there was an over-diagnosis and over-treatment of low-grade prostate cancer, which has been found to not effect a man’s longevity.

Recently, there has been a number of emerging biomarkers that allow physicians to better risk stratify men who may be at risk for prostate cancer, explains Bjurlin. That allows men to be counseled on who may appropriately undergo a prostate biopsy because their risk of cancer may be significant. At the same time, it may allow the ability to educate men who may be able to avoid undergoing a prostate biopsy.

Some new markers are serum-based or urine-based, and allow a look at the overall cancer detection rate. Others help define which men may have a risk of clinically significant disease.
 


Marc A. Bjurlin, DO, clinical assistant professor, Department of Urology, NYU Langone Medical Center, discusses differentiating molecular risk assessments for patients with prostate cancer.

According to Bjurlin, the way we screen for prostate cancer and detect cancer has changed significantly over the last several years. Traditionally, men with prostate cancer were screened with prostate specific antigen (PSA) serum blood tests, but it was found that it is quite a low specificity for detecting prostate cancer. As a result, there was an over-diagnosis and over-treatment of low-grade prostate cancer, which has been found to not effect a man’s longevity.

Recently, there has been a number of emerging biomarkers that allow physicians to better risk stratify men who may be at risk for prostate cancer, explains Bjurlin. That allows men to be counseled on who may appropriately undergo a prostate biopsy because their risk of cancer may be significant. At the same time, it may allow the ability to educate men who may be able to avoid undergoing a prostate biopsy.

Some new markers are serum-based or urine-based, and allow a look at the overall cancer detection rate. Others help define which men may have a risk of clinically significant disease.
 



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