Predicting the Risk of Patients With Biopsy Gleason Score 6 to Harbor a Higher Grade Cancer

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Abstract

Purpose

Prostate cancer Gleason score 3 + 3 = 6 is currently the most common score assigned on prostatic biopsies. We analyzed the clinical variables that predict the likelihood of a patient with biopsy Gleason score 6 to harbor a higher grade tumor.

Materials and Methods

The study population consisted of 448 patients with a mean age of 59.1 years who underwent radical prostatectomy between February 2003 to October 2006 for Gleason score 6 adenocarcinoma. The effect of preoperative variables on the probability of a Gleason score upgrade on final pathological evaluation was evaluated using logistic regression, and classification and regression tree analysis.

Results

Gleason score upgrade was found in 91 of 448 patients (20.3%). Logistic regression showed that only serum prostate specific antigen and the greatest percent of cancer in a core were significantly associated with a score upgrade (p = 0.0014 and 0.023, respectively). Classification and regression tree analysis showed that the risk of a Gleason score upgrade was 62% when serum prostate specific antigen was higher than 12 ng/ml and 18% when serum prostate specific antigen was 12 ng/ml or less. In patients with serum prostate specific antigen lower than 12 ng/ml the risk of a score upgrade could be dichotomized at a greatest percent of cancer in a core of 5%. The risk was 22.6% and 10.5% when the greatest percent of cancer in a core was higher than 5% and 5% or lower, respectively.

Conclusions

The probability of patients with a prostate biopsy Gleason score of 6 to conceal a Gleason score of 7 or higher can be predicted using serum prostate specific antigen and the greatest percent of cancer in a core. With these parameters it is possible to predict upgrade rates as high as 62% and as low as 10.5%.

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