Clinical practice guidelines for prostate cancer screening inform prostate cancer treatment
If you’ve struggled to find clear answers for your patients in regard to prostate cancer screening, prognosis, and appropriate treatment, new molecular marker tests can add critical insights to your medical findings.
Clinical practice guidelines for prostate cancer screening should include prostate cancer marker tests (PCMs). With prostate cancer biomarkers, in some cases you will confirm your recommendation, providing you and your patient with peace of mind. In other cases, these tests may provide new information that leads you to make a different recommendation.
PCMs screen for molecular or genomic markers that have been associated with:
- increased risk of developing prostate cancer
- verification of prostate cancer in cases of conflicting data
- tumor aggressiveness
- prostate cancer-specific mortality risk
- responsiveness to targeted therapies
Below is information about available PCMs at various waypoints in a patient’s journey:
Waypoint 1: PSA Screening
While 4.0 is the common cut-off for referring men for additional testing, research has found that men with levels between 1.5 and 4.0 are at higher risk of developing (or already having) cancer and should not wait 5 years for re-screening. These PCMs can help you determine who may be at increased risk despite low PSA levels.
Waypoint 2: Biopsy
PCMs expand the scope of knowledge gained from traditional TRUS biopsies. These tests can often use the same tissue from the original biopsy and help confirm negative biopsies, especially in cases of men with high PSA scores or other signs of prostate cancer. Because they can determine tumor aggressiveness, they can also help you feel comfortable with a recommendation of active surveillance.
Waypoint 3: Active Surveillance
Telling a patient you want to take a wait-and-see approach after giving them a cancer diagnosis can be uncomfortable for you and your patient, often leading to anxiety and a desire to obtain more information. These PCMs can help provide that level of assurance by measuring the aggressiveness of your patient’s tumor.
Waypoint 4: Treatment
Prostate cancer treatment often means making decisions about how the cancer might act in the future. These PCMs assess tumor aggressiveness and prostate cancer-specific mortality risk to help you decide the best course of action.
Waypoint 5: Recurrence
Recurrent prostate cancer can be more quickly identified and treated with new advancements like targeted precision imaging (TPI). Learn more about how this advancement can inform your recommendations.
Waypoint 6: Advanced-Stage Cancer
For patients diagnosed with Stage 4 or Stage 5 prostate cancer, the best current treatment is androgen receptor (AR) targeted therapies. Use this PCM to determine if a patient’s tumor is AR-V7 positive or negative.
Ordering Prostate Cancer Tests
Healthcare providers interested in ordering any of the PCM tests featured on this website can find links to additional information and ordering instructions here.
For patients interested in ordering the tests, please share your interest with your healthcare provider physician who can order the tests on your behalf.