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U.S. Representatives Urge Critical Improvements in Prostate Cancer Detection
Date:2/11/2008

s about their health."

Prostate cancer care crisis

The lack of reliable diagnostic tools is leading to a crisis in care for a disease that can be cured if detected early. This reality is sad for every American man who faces screening for prostate cancer; however, it is particularly devastating for African American males who have significantly higher incidence and mortality rates. Existing tests, including the prostate specific antigen (PSA) test and biopsies, miss cancers and/or underestimate their aggressiveness and thus lead to failed clinical interventions in as many as in 1 in 2 men. Even when PSAs are abnormal, approximately 88% of men - or 1 million per year - undergo unnecessary biopsies and end up not having prostate cancer. Since the current diagnostic tools cannot reliably distinguish aggressive from low-risk prostate cancer, many men undergo unnecessary, costly treatments that cause complications, such as impotence and incontinence.

"Advanced imaging technologies will arm physicians with critical information required to improve quality of care and reduce health care costs," said Faina Shtern, M.D., president and CEO of the nonprofit AdMeTech Foundation. "Federal support made it possible to advance breast cancer imaging, which transformed early detection and treatment of breast cancer. We salute the U.S. Congress for helping create similar possibilities for men."

Prostate imaging research a priority

In calling for increased funding, the representatives are echoing the principles of the Prostate Research, Imaging and Men's Education Act, or PRIME Act (S. 1734/ HR. 3563) - legislation currently sponsored in both houses of Congress that calls for increased funding for prostate cancer diagnostic technology.

The PRIME Act, introduced in the Senate by Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-CA), John Kerry (D-MA) and Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), and in the House by Reps. Cummings (D-MD), Albert Wynn (D-MD) and Dan Burton (R-IN),
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SOURCE AdMeTech Foundation
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