FRIDAY, June 4, 2021 (HealthDay News) — The optimal age for starting prostate cancer (PCa) screening in relatives of patients with PCa is younger than that in the general population, and varies by the number of first-degree relatives with PCa as well as their age at diagnosis, according to a study published June 1 in PLOS Medicine.

Xing Xu, from the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg, and colleagues used a nationwide cohort of all men aged 0 to 96 years at baseline (born after 1931) residing in Sweden and their fathers. From 1958 to 2015, a total of 6,343,727 men were identified, and their risk for prostate cancer was assessed.

The researchers report that 88,999 men were diagnosed with stage III/IV PCa or died of PCa. For men aged 50 years in the general population, the overall 10-year cumulative risk for stage III/IV or fatal PCa was 0.2 percent. For men with two or more first-degree relatives diagnosed with PCa and the youngest relative diagnosed before age 60 years, this screening level was reached at age 41 years. With two or more first-degree relatives diagnosed after age 59 years, men reached this screening level at age 43 years, which was similar to that of men with one first-degree relative diagnosed before age 60 years. This screening level was reached at age 45 years when one first-degree relative was diagnosed between ages 60 and 69 years and at 47 years when one first-degree relative was diagnosed after 69 years.

“Our clinically relevant findings could be used for evidence-based personalized PCa screening guidance and supplement current PCa screening guidelines for relatives of patients with PCa,” the authors write.

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