BACKGROUND. The European Randomized study of Screening for Prostate Cancer (ERSPC) investigates the feasibility of population-based screening. This report compares the preliminary outcome of cancers detected in the screen and the control arm of its Rotterdam section, by means of biochemical progression rates. METHODS. In the screen arm of this study (21,210 men), screening was applied according to well-established protocols, and a 4-year screen interval was chosen. Widely accepted biochemical progression-criteria were used to evaluate the diagnosed cancers over time. RESULTS. Although more cancers were detected in the screen than in the control arm (1,339 vs. 298, P < 0.001), their clinico-pathological features were more favorable. Furthermore, screened men had higher 5-year survival rates for biochemical progression after surgery (84.4% vs. 58.9% in controls), radiotherapy (71.0% vs. 58.0%), and endocrine therapy (40.5% vs. 16.3%). CONCLUSIONS. The higher biochemical progression-free survival can at least in part be explained by lead and length-time. How screening will effect the mortality remains unclear.

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The Prostate
Department of Urology

Roemeling, S., Roobol-Bouts, M., Gosselaar, C., & Schröder, F. (2006). Biochemical progression rates in the screen arm compared to the control arm of the Rotterdam section of the European Randomized study of Screening for Prostate Cancer (ERSPC). The Prostate, 66(10), 1076–1081. doi:10.1002/pros.20391