Prostate-specific antigen velocity (PSAV) is the rate of change in prostate-specific antigen (PSA) values with repeated measurement over time. Accurate use of PSAV for prostate cancer early detection requires the use of two or more PSA levels collected over approximately 1.5 to 2 years. When these specimen collection criteria are met, more than 95% of men without prostate cancer will have a PSAV less than 0.75 ng/mL/y, whereas approximately 70% of men with prostate cancer will have a PSAV above this threshold. PSAV is thus more specific than routine PSA testing for the presence of prostate cancer, because few men (< 5%) without prostate cancer have a PSAV sufficient to trigger prostate biopsy. The use of PSAV in the increasing number of men with lengthy PSA histories obtained in systematic efforts at prostate cancer early detection may aid in diagnosing prostate cancer and spare some men unnecessary prostate biopsy. This review briefly summarizes the theoretic basis and clinical utility of PSAV in prostate cancer early detection.
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