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The European Randomized study of Screening for Prostate Cancer (ERSPC) was established more than 12 years ago and is the largest ever randomized study on screening for prostate cancer.
The identification of risk groups in the population is crucial to reducing over diagnosis and over treatment of prostate cancer. Until now there has been no safe way of separating those patients whose cancer will not progress from those that require immediate treatment.
This is a major European effort involving 184,000 men in eight countries – Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Belgium, France, Spain, Italy and Switzerland.
The study and the related quality of life research should result in evidence-based advice to governments around the world – answering the pivotal question whether screening leads to an improvement of cancer-specific survival and identify men at risk. It will also address the quality of life during screening, and the role of serum markers.
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Erasmus Univ, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus University Medical Center, Med Ctr, Erasmus MC, Dept Urol, Netherlands