Three-fourths of men ages 40–49 could safely avoid annual prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening for an additional 10 years if their baseline PSA falls in the lowest 75th percentile.
A Mayo Clinic study looked at prostate outcomes in a random sample of 268 men, ages 40–49, in Olmsted County, Minn., since 1990. Each patient was evaluated by a urologist every two years, including PSA screening, an ultrasound examination and questionnaire. Among study participants, no one between 40 and 49 with a baseline PSA below 1 ng/ml developed an intermediate- or high-risk cancer during nearly 20 years of follow-up. The study also found that participants with low PSAs, below 1.0 ng/ml, were also very unlikely to develop even low-risk prostate cancer.