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No Strong Ties Found Between Body Mass Index, PSA Level

Study concludes that clinicians need not adjust PSA levels when evaluating overweight men

FRIDAY, Dec. 11 (HealthDay News) -- A man's body mass index (BMI) does not appear significantly associated with his level of prostate specific antigen (PSA), and need not be considered in evaluating PSA tests for the possibility of prostate cancer, according to a study in the December issue of The Journal of Urology.

Stacy Loeb, M.D., of the James Buchanan Brady Urological Institute in Baltimore, and colleagues assessed PSA levels and their correlation with BMI in 994 men without prostate cancer in the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging (including 483 men who had undergone pelvic MRI). In addition to BMI, factors evaluated included percent body fat and weight changes with time.

After adjusting for age, the researchers discerned an insignificant inverse relationship of PSA and BMI (a 10-point BMI increase was associated with a prostate specific antigen difference of −0.03 ng/ml) in men without prostate cancer. The results were similar when men with prostate cancer were included in the analysis and when percent body fat was substituted for BMI. PSA level was also not associated with weight change over time.

"Consistent with prior studies, we found an inverse relationship between obesity and serum PSA. However, the magnitude of the difference was small. Thus, adjusting PSA for BMI does not appear warranted," the authors write.

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