Rome

Simple blood test shows Italian doctors prostate cancer

Clinic the first in Rome to use the blood test for detection

Simple blood test shows Italian doctors prostate cancer

Rome, November 19 - A Rome-based clinic is using a new tool to test for prostate cancer and to highlight the aggressiveness of tumours detected. A simple blood test is being used to look for certain cancer markers - prostate-specific antigens (PSA) - which in high amounts may identify men at risk of prostate cancer. The test has been commonly used in other countries, including the United States and Britain, although critics have argued that the test can also set off over-reactions, leading patients into overly aggressive treatments. Still, the PSA blood test is now being used at Rome's Regional Elena National Institute of Clinical Pathology. The Regina Elena is the first public health facility in Rome to apply this blood test, which is less expensive than biopsies. Cancer of the prostate is one of the most frequent cancers found among men and this year, 36,000 new cases are expected in Italy. The incidence of the disease has been steadily rising and is likely to continue to do so: by 2020, more than 43,000 annual cases are forecast, growing to more than 50,000 by 2030.

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