Management for men aged ≤55 years with low-risk prostate cancer (LRPC) is debated given quality-of-life implications with definitive treatment versus the potential missed opportunity for cure with conservative management. The objective of this study was to define rates of conservative management for LRPC and associated short-term outcomes in young versus older men in the United States.

The nonpublic Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Prostate with Active Surveillance/Watchful Waiting (AS/WW) Database identified 50,302 men who were diagnosed with LRPC from 2010 through 2015. AS/WW rates in the United States were stratified by age (≤55 vs ≥56 years). Prostate cancer-specific mortality and overall mortality were defined by initial management type (AS/WW vs definitive treatment [referent]) and age.

AS/WW utilization increased from 8.61% (2010) to 34.56% (2015) among men aged ≤55 years (P for trend <0.001) and from 15.99% to 43.81% among men aged ≥56 years (P for trend <.001). Among patients who had ≤2 positive biopsy cores, AS/WW rates increased from 12.90% to 48.78% for men aged ≤55 years and from 21.85% to 58.01% for men aged ≥56 years. Among patients who had ≥3 positive biopsy cores, AS/WW rates increased from 3.89% to 22.45% for men aged ≤55 years and from 10.05% to 28.49% for men aged ≥56 years (all P for trend <.001). Five-year prostate cancer-specific mortality rates were <0.30% across age and initial management type subgroups.

AS/WW rates quadrupled for patients aged ≤55 years from 2010 to 2015, with favorable short-term outcomes. These findings demonstrate the short-term safety and increasing acceptance of AS/WW for both younger and older patients. However, there are still higher absolute rates of AS/WW in older patients (P < .001), suggesting some national ambivalence toward AS/WW in younger patients.

Cancer. 2019 Jun 28 [Epub ahead of print]

Amandeep R Mahal, Santino Butler, Idalid Franco, Vinayak Muralidhar, Dalia Larios, Luke R G Pike, Shuang G Zhao, Nina N Sanford, Robert T Dess, Felix Y Feng, Anthony V D’Amico, Daniel E Spratt, James B Yu, Paul L Nguyen, Timothy R Rebbeck, Brandon A Mahal

Department of Therapeutic Radiology, Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut., Department of Radiation Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute/Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts., Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts., Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan., Departmentof Radiation Oncology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas., Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of California at San Francisco, San Francisco, California.