Investig Clin Urol.  2021 May;62(3):282-289. 10.4111/icu.20200302.

Influence of repeated prostate-specific antigen screening on treatment pattern in a country with a limited social perception of prostate cancer: Korean national wide observational study

  • 1Department of Urology, College of Medicine, Yeungnam University, Daegu, Korea
  • 2Department of Medical Research Center, College of Medicine, Yeungnam University, Daegu, Korea


To investigate the real-world prevalence of repeated prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening in Korea and its influence on the treatment pattern of the prostate cancer (PCa) over the last decade, during which PCa has become the 3rd most popular male cancer and PSA test has gained minimal social interest.
Materials and Methods
From Korean National Health Insurance Service data, men with newly diagnosed PCa from 2008 through 2016 were identified, then the treatment modalities between the repeated PSA screening (defined as at least three PSA tests during minimal 2 years before registration) and non-screening groups (when the first PSA test was performed within 3 months before registration) were compared.
Among 73,280 men with PCa, only 27.7% met the criteria for screening. In contrast with the continuous increase in the screening population from 334 men in 2008 to 5,049 men in 2016, the non-screening population remained low at 1,543 men in 2008 and 1,819 men in 2016 (p<0.001). During these periods, more patients underwent local therapy (prostatectomy or radiation) in the screening population compared to their non-screened counterparts (59.8% vs. 46.7%, p<0.001), and fewer patients underwent systemic therapy (chemotherapy or hormone) (40.2% vs. 53.3%, p<0.001). Multivariate analysis adjusting other variables demonstrated 2-fold higher mortality in the non-screening population (hazard ratio=2.050, p<0.0001).
Among the patients newly diagnosed with PCa, only about a quarter received repeated PSA screening. However, these patients showed a higher probability of local treatment than the systemic one in comparison with non-screened counterparts.


Mass screening; Prostate specific antigen; Prostatic neoplasms
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