New Criteria May Help Predict Insignificant Form of Prostate Cancer

ROCHESTER--A common form of prostate cancer that is clinically insignificant can be predicted with reliability using a new set of criteria according to study from the Mayo Clinic.

Prostate cancer killed over 40,000 Americans in 1995. Prostate cancer is second only to lung cancer as a male cancer killer in the United States. While 40% of men in their 40s and 50s have at least tiny areas of undetected cancer in their prostate glands, prostate cancer accounts for only 3% of US male deaths.

The ability to define clinically insignificant prostate cancer in a patient with a relatively short life expectancy could help avoid unnecessary surgery, radiation therapy, or other treatments, and, until now has not been possible.