Genetic Testing Rates for Prostate Cancer Are Low

By Robert Dillard - November 18, 2022

Genetic testing is, which is recommended in patients with potentially hereditary breast, ovarian, pancreatic, and prostate cancers (HBOPP), is often used for ovarian cancer, but rates are lower for prostate cancer, according to a study published in Annals of Surgical Oncology.

In this retrospective cohort study, researchers assessed 28,586 HBOPP patients diagnosed from 2013 to 2019. The researchers noted that guideline-concordant testing (GCT) was analyzed annually according to guideline updates. Frequency of testing was assessed using chi-squared testing, and while factors associated with receiving genetic testing were analyzed using multivariable logistic regression.

According to the results, genetic testing occurred in 17% of HBOPP patients, and rates increased from 9% in 2013 to 21% in 2019. The results showed that ovarian cancer had the highest testing (40%) and prostate cancer the lowest (4%). Younger age, female sex, White race, commercial insurance, urban location, family history of HBOPP, and triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) were associated with increased testing. GCT increased from 38% in 2013 to 44% in 2019 and was highest for early age at breast cancer diagnosis, TNBC, male breast cancer, and breast cancer with family history of HBOPP, and lowest for metastatic prostate cancer (6%), the researchers further noted.

“The frequency of genetic testing for HBOPP cancer has increased over time. Though GCT is high for breast cancer, there are gaps in concordance among patients with other cancers. Increasing provider and patient education, genetic counseling, and insurance coverage for testing among HBOPP patients may improve guideline adherence,” the researchers concluded.