Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2440/86878
Type: Journal article
Title: Abnormal PSA tests: delays in referral
Author: Stapleton, A.
Johns, R.
Kopsaftis, T.
Tamblyn, D.
Citation: Australian Family Physician, 2008; 37(1-2):84-88
Publisher: Royal Australian College of General Practitioners
Issue Date: 2008
ISSN: 0300-8495
Statement of
Responsibility: 
Alan MF Stapleton, Richard L Johns, Tina Kopsaftis, David J Tamblyn
Abstract: BACKGROUND: The main benefit of prostate specific antigen (PSA) testing is to help detect prostate cancer at an early, curable stage. Delays between the first abnormal PSA test and biopsy can undermine that benefit, but have not yet been studied. We investigated delays before biopsy together with associated PSA increases as an indicator of disease progression. METHODS: We identified 241 patients with a primary care referral because of an elevated PSA result (>4 ng/mL) and no previous prostate biopsy. Prostate specific antigen results and intervals between PSA testing, specialist clinic referral, appointment and biopsy were stratified by age. RESULTS: Median times between first abnormal PSA, referral, consultation and biopsy were modest but associated with increases in PSA. Extended delays (>20 months) between first abnormal PSA and referral occurred in 25% of younger men. A PSA result less than 10 ng/mL was the best predictor of a delay to refer. DISCUSSION: Rising PSA and possible cancer progression during investigation for prostate cancer suggest that prompt care is advisable.
Keywords: Humans; Prostatic Neoplasms; Prostate-Specific Antigen; Age Factors; Time Factors; Aged; Referral and Consultation; Primary Health Care; Male
Rights: Copyright status unknown
RMID: 0030011195
Published version: http://www.racgp.org.au/afp/200801/22318
Appears in Collections:Public Health publications

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