The influence of serial prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening on the PSA velocity at diagnosis

Cancer. 2008 Aug 15;113(4):717-22. doi: 10.1002/cncr.23609.


Background: A prostate-specific antigen (PSA) velocity (PSAV) >2 ng/mL during the year before diagnosis has been associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer-specific mortality (PCSM) after radical prostatectomy (RP) or radiation therapy. The objective of the current study was to examine whether the proportion of men with a PSAV >2 ng/mL per year has changed significantly during the PSA era.

Methods: The authors evaluated 1095 men from a prospective prostate cancer screening study who underwent RP between 1989 and 2002. For the purposes of this analysis, clinicopathologic features were compared between men who were treated during the following 3 periods: before 1995, from 1995 to 1998, and after 1998. Logistic regression analysis was used to evaluate for an association between the year of diagnosis and the proportion of men with a PSAV >2 ng/mL per year.

Results: Two hundred sixty-two of 1095 men (24%) had a PSAV >2 ng/mL per year. There was a statistically significant reduction in the proportion of men presenting with a PSAV >2 ng/mL per year over the study period. Specifically, 35% of men presented with a PSAV >2 ng/mL per year in the early period compared with only 22% and 12% in the middle and late periods, respectively (P < .001). Over the studied periods, there also was a significantly greater proportion of men with >2 PSA values obtained before diagnosis (P < .001).

Conclusions: Men who were screened serially with PSA were less likely to present with a PSAV >2 ng/mL per year. This association lends support to the hypothesis that serial PSA-based screening may lead to a decrease in PCSM.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen / analysis*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / mortality
  • Survival Rate
  • Time Factors


  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen