Significant Cost Burden Associated With Prostate Cancer Screening, Treatment in Older Men

A new report published in JAMA Oncology highlights the cost burden of utilizing prostate cancer screening and treatment in this age group.

Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death among American men, behind lung cancer, according to the American Cancer Society. Although the disease can be serious, it is typically slow-growing and may not require aggressive treatment, especially in older men.

Because of this, the US Preventive Services Task Force currently recommends against routine screening for prostate cancer in men 70 years of age and older, citing that the potential benefits do not outweigh the harms for this age group.

A new report published in JAMA Oncology highlights the cost burden of utilizing prostate cancer screening and treatment in this age group. According to the findings, screening and treatment for prostate cancer in men above the age of 70 are estimated to cost Medicare more than $1.2 billion over a 3-year period for each group of men diagnosed.

Screening and treatment for the disease in men above age 70 can cause unnecessary harm and adverse effects. The new findings indicate that forgoing screening and treatment for those who would not benefit could reduce health care costs, according to the study.

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