signpost iconProstate summary sheet

Authors: Watson E, Jenkins L, Bukach C, Austoker J

Bottom Line:

For every 1,000 men aged 50-70 who are given a PSA test:

  • 100 will have a raised PSA, of whom
  • 26 will be diagnosed with prostate cancer after biopsy
  • 7 will be diagnosed later after a negative biopsy
  • 7 men without a raised PSA will be found to have prostate cancer (false negatives)
It is not known how many of the men diagnosed would have suffered mortality or morbidity from their prostate cancer had they not been detected earlier.

Publication details:

A very concise overview of the issues surrounding PSA testing. Includes a pathway for referral and treatment choices.

We assessed this page using an appraisal instrument developed by Minervation specifically for this project. This approach is still in development, so you should regard the assessments as a general guide. Click here to find out more, or to let us know how you think the approach could be improved.

Reliability comments:

  • The content has been checked by experts.
  • How often it will be updated remains to be seen.
  • No references are cited.
  • No About Us or site policy statement

Usability comments:

  • A very useful graphical tool.
  • The website does not conform to web accessibility standards
  • Home page of this website is messy


Item Score
Is it clear who has developed the web site and what their objectives are? 1
There is an NHS logo on the homepage, but no information about the National Screening Committee or an About Us section.
Does the site report a robust quality control procedure? 0
There is no methodology section or any description of how information is out together.
Is the page content checked by an expert? 3
The content has been checked by experts.
Is the page updated regularly? 2
How often it will be updated remains to be seen.
Does the page cite relevant sources where appropriate? 1
No references are cited.
Item Score
Is the site accessible without a login? 3
No registration required.
Does the site conform to web Accessibility standards? 2
Lida score 81%
Is the site design clear and transparent? 1
The homepage is very messy. It is hard to tell which is the main menu. Sub menus appear on the right hand side and are not very obvious. The ordering of topics in the submenus seems arbitrary. No breadcrumbs are used to guide users. Background colour of web pages makes it a strain to read the text.
Is the site design consistent from one page to another? 2
Yes, there is general consistency in the poor design of this site!
Can users find what they need on the site? 1
Despite the cluttered homepage there are links to the prostate cancer area, so users can find the right section. However, the prostate submenu is in a poor position so users may not see the subheadings. There is a search box. Results are displayed poorly and it is unclear how they are ranked. There is no site map
Is the format of information clear and appropriate for the audience? 2
PDF only.
Weighted total (Usability + (Reliability x 2)): 25
We score each question out of three where:
0 = Never or Can't tell
1 = Sometimes or partly
2 = Mostly
3 = Always

Date rated


NHS Cancer Screening Programmes




Professionals, Patients

Publication Type





2 stars


3 stars

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