It is estimated that in 2018, approximately 164,690 new cases and 29,430 prostate cancer–related deaths occurred in the United States.
Prostate cancer is now the third leading cause of cancer death in men, exceeded by lung cancer and colorectal cancer. It accounts for 19% of all male cancers and 9% of male cancer-related deaths. Age-adjusted incidence rates increased steadily from 1975 through 1992, with particularly dramatic increases associated with the inception of widespread use of prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening in the late 1980s and early 1990s, followed by a fall in incidence. A decline in early-stage prostate cancer incidence rates from 2011 to 2012 (19%) in men aged 50 years and older persisted through 2013 (6%).
Between 2013 and 2015, mortality rates appear to have stabilized. It has been suggested that declines in mortality rates in certain jurisdictions reflect the benefit of PSA screening, but others have noted that these observations may be explained by independent phenomena such as improved treatments.
The estimated lifetime risk of a prostate cancer diagnosis is about 14.0%, and the lifetime risk of dying from this disease is 2.6%. Cancer statistics from the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute (NCI) indicated that between 2005 and 2011, the proportion of disease diagnosed at a locoregional stage was 93% for whites and 92% for African Americans; the proportion of disease diagnosed at a late stage was 4% for whites and 5% for African Americans. An autopsy study of white and Asian men also found an increase in occult prostate cancer with age, reaching nearly 60% in men older than 80 years. More than 50% of cancers in Asian men and 25% of cancers in white men had a Gleason score of 7 or greater, suggesting that Gleason score may be an imprecise indicator of clinically insignificant prostate cancer.