ORLANDO, FL, May 21, 2008—Men with greater access to prostate cancer screenings and treatment have better outcomes from the disease, a new study shows. Urologist population density was directly related to increased numbers of screening programs and decreased mortality rates from the disease. Today, researchers from the University of Alabama, Birmingham, presented data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirming the relationship. The data was presented to the media during a special press conference on May 21, 2008 at 11:30 a.m.
It has been established that prostate cancer screening programs result in earlier detection of the disease and, as a result, greater treatment options and better outcomes for the majority of patients. Findings suggest that prostate cancer screening and the availability of urologic care are at least partly responsible for the variation in prostate cancer mortality rates observed in this country. Researchers say that this study underscores an increased need for screening programs and access to urologists for patients who reside in areas with fewer urologists.
In the study, researchers compared mortality rates for white males with state-specific screening rates and urologist population densities. Multivariate linear regression analysis was performed, with controls for medical care access, socioeconomic status, median family income, degree of urbanization and insurance status. Both urologist population density and PSA screening rates correlated with mortality rates, and multi-variable linear regression analysis demonstrated them to be significant independent predictors of mortality.