Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men after skin cancer. The American Cancer Society reports that more than 2 million men in the US count themselves as prostate cancer survivors. The PSA test can give an early indication of prostate cancer. The test measures the level of PSA (prostate specific antigen) in the patient’s blood.

Prostate Cancer

A study supported by a research grant from Beckman Coulter subsidiary published in the March issue of Urology reports that the free PSA blood test (fPSA test) can detect prostate cancer in black men. fPSA is a more sensitive test for cancer risk than the standard PSA test. The assay is the only free PSA test approved by the FDA as a safe and effective in diagnosing this cancer type.

The nationwide trial of this free test found that it helped avoid unnecessary and costly biopsies of the prostate. According to the research team, “Black men have the highest rate of prostate cancer in the world and nearly 75 percent of the prostate biopsies that both black and white men get are unnecessary”. The national trial was done on 773 men who had both the test as well as prostate biopsies. The test detected 95% of the cancers.

The study, conducted in seven major U.S. medical facilities, used the Hybritech® free PSA assay manufactured by Beckman Coulter. The test is used as a follow-up for men who have moderately elevated levels of total PSA (4 to 10 ng/mL).

Beckman Coulter the leading provider of instrument systems and complementary products provides best-in-class laboratory solutions including a broad spectrum of diagnostic tests and laboratory instrumentation such as fully automated hematology analyzers, flow cytometers and coagulation analyzers.