Background: Recent observations suggest that prostate cancer is an increasing disease among older adolescents and young adults.
Methods: Incidence, mortality, and survival data were obtained from the US National Cancer Institute Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results program and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation Global Burden of Disease database.
Results: Worldwide, the incidence of prostate cancer has increased in all groups between ages 15 and 40 years and increased globally at a steady rate averaging 2% per year since 1990 (P < .01). In the United States, this age group was >6 times more likely than older men to have distant disease at diagnosis. Stage for stage, their survival rate improved less than in older men. Whereas the overall 5-year relative survival rate in the United States for men diagnosed between ages 40 and 80 years was between 95% and 100%, it was 30% in those aged 15 to 24 years, 50% in those aged 20 to 29 years, and 80% in those aged 25 to 34 years.
Conclusions: Prostate cancer in older adolescent and young adult men has increased in most countries. There is some evidence that this may be caused in part by underdiagnosis, prostate-specific antigen screening, and overdiagnosis. It also may be caused by trends in obesity, physical inactivity, HPV infection, substance exposure, environmental carcinogens, and/or referral patterns. How the biology of these cancers differs from that in older men and how the etiologies vary from country to country remain to be determined.
Keywords: adolescent and young adult; incidence; mortality; prostate cancer; survival.
© 2019 American Cancer Society.