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New model to improve prostate cancer diagnosis


By Ben Comber


Vincent Gnanapragasam, urooncology lecturer at the University of Cambridge and Urological Malignancies programme director co-lead at Cancer Research UK Cambridge Centre.
Vincent Gnanapragasam, urooncology lecturer at the University of Cambridge and Urological Malignancies programme director co-lead at Cancer Research UK Cambridge Centre.

Cambridge University Hospitals (CUH) has developed a five-tier model to help consultants better counsel and treat the rising tide of prostate cancer patients.

The model categorises so-called aggressive “tiger” cancers, sleeping “pussycat” cancers and those inbetween.

Once the tier of the cancer is identified, patients and consultants can have more informed discussions on the best way to manage a condition.

The model was developed using data from 11,000 UK men, and CUH urology and research lead, Vincent Gnanapragasam, pictured, has retested the model using data from 75,000 men from Switzerland and Singapore.

He said: “Some newly diagnosed tumours will be aggressive - while many others will have an indolent natural history.

“Understanding the likely progress is critical for giving patients precise information tailored to their own situation and for planning management.

“This model is a significant improvement on how we have done this historically and we can now predict a cancers’ likely behaviour with a very high degree of accuracy.

“The beauty of it is that the CPG model has zero costs and is easy to reference as it exploits routinely collected and standardised diagnostic data.

“We propose the adoption of the CPG model as a simple to use but more accurate stratification tool to help guide management for men with newly diagnosed non-metastatic prostate cancer.”

The results have been passed on to the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE), for consideration of adoption as national best practice.

The CPG model is also being developed into a web based freely accessible tool.



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