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According to multiple studies, Black men face a higher risk of aggressive forms of prostate cancer. A new study suggests that this may not mean they are at a higher risk of death or metastasis from it. According to JAMA, statistically, Black men face a 59.9 percent chance of prostate cancer becoming more progressive. White men only have a 48.3 percent chance of this happening.
However, metastasis and mortality wise they only have a .01 percent higher than White men. This means it is highly recommended that Black men actively surveil their condition. The same study shows that Black men receive definitive treatment at a rate of 54.8 percent. Only 41.4 percent of White men receive definitive treatment.
According to author Brent S. Rose, MD, of UC San Diego Health — and colleagues — Black men face a significantly higher risk of progression to render them poor candidates for active surveillance. To calculate the potential risk factor Rose and his colleagues studied 8,726 men in the United States Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Health Care System.
The patients they studied had low-risk prostate cancer. Of those patients, 2,280 were Black men and 6,446 were non-Hispanic White men. Their study showed that even though Black men faced a higher progression and definitive treatment of prostate cancer, they showed no increase of metastasis or death.
Furthermore, their study further indicated that it has been noted over the years that active surveillance in low-risk prostate cancer for Black men has been low. Recent data suggest that active surveillance for a Black man’s prostate cancer is highly recommended.
Some studies show that not all “active” surveillance is treated the same. Some are just slightly moderate. Not the way that Rose and his colleague recommend.
Until further studies are conducted on the differences between White and Black men prostate cancer and their biological differences — there may continue to be a lower rate of active surveillance for Black patients. However, many health physicians and doctors may hold different viewpoints on this idea.
Written by Sheena Robertson
AJMC: African American Men Face Higher Risk of Aggressive Prostate Cancer, but Not Necessarily Death; by Jared Kaitwasser
JAMA Network: Association Between African American Race and Clinical Outcomes in Men Treated for Low-Risk Prostate Cancer With Active Surveillance; Rishi Deka, Ph.D., P. Travive Courtney, MAS, and J. Kellogg Parsons, MD, MHS.
Featured Image Courtesy of Derek Bridges’ Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Inline Image Courtesy of Rob Olivera’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License