National-level data that characterize contemporary prostate cancer patients are limited. We used 2004-2005 data from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program to generate a contemporary profile of prostate cancer patients (N = 82 541) and compared patient characteristics of this 2004-2005 population with those of patients diagnosed in 1998-1989 and 1996-1997. Among newly diagnosed patients in 2004-2005, the majority (94%) had localized (ie, stage T1 or T2) prostate cancer and a median serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level of 6.7 ng/mL. Between 1988-1989 and 2004-2005, the average age at prostate cancer diagnosis decreased from 72.2 to 67.2 years, and the incidence rate of T3 or T4 cancer decreased from 52.7 per 100 000 to 7.9 per 100 000 among whites and from 90.9 per 100 000 to 13.3 per 100 000 among blacks. In 2004-2005, compared with whites, blacks were more likely to be diagnosed at a younger age (mean age: 64.7 vs 67.5 years, difference = 2.7 years, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.5 to 2.9 years, P < .001) and to have a higher PSA level at diagnosis (median PSA level: 7.4 vs 6.6 ng/mL, difference = 0.8 ng/mL, 95% CI = 0.6 to 1.0 ng/mL, P < .001). In conclusion, more men were diagnosed with prostate cancer at a younger age and earlier stage in 2004-2005 than in earlier years. The racial disparity in cancer stage at diagnosis has decreased statistically significantly over time.