4KScore Prostate Test Cost

Written by:  Howmuchisit.org Staff

Each year, more than 3 million men are living with prostate cancer.

To prevent this, early detection is key, which begins with the screening of the Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA), the most commonly used blood test, which is designed to assess the health of the prostate.

During this screening, if the PSA results are too high, then a doctor may recommend a biopsy; however, according to 4KScore, because a PSA test cannot tell the difference between an aggressive prostate cancer and a less serious scenario, many men may receive a biopsy when they didn’t need one in the first place.

The 4KScore prostate test, developed by OPKO Health, INC., is a commercial blood test which uses a special algorithm to determine how aggressive your prostate cancer may be.

4KScore Prostate Test Cost
Lab” (CC BY 2.0) by eelke dekker

How much does it cost for a 4KScore test?

The costs of the 4KScore test, as per this official press release, was dropped from $1,900 to $595.  With the company’s Patient Health Advocacy Program, they state they are committed to helping patients who do not have any sort of health insurance policy, offering payment plans and self-pay options.  Patients are advised to call the billing hotline at 855-4KBILLING for more information.

From our research, your health insurance policy may cover the lab work, but it will all depend on your policy and plan, because, in some cases, the insurance company may view this test as being “investigational” or it may not be covered at all.  The 4Kscore test did receive a Category Level 1 Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) code from the American Medical Association, according to this press release.

What is the 4KScore test?

The test was named “4KScore” for the four prostate-specific kallikrein assay results:  total PSA; free PSA; intact PSA; and Human Kallikrein-2 or hK2.

According to Daniel Lin, MD in this Medscape.com article, he notes the blood test is an assay panel that is able to combine three PSA measures — total, free, and intact — with another prostate-specific measure — human kallikrein 2 (hK2).  Using an algorithm combining the patient’s age, previous biopsy status and digital rectal exam result, a spectrum of risk can be assessed, from 1% to 95%.

According to the company, the test is a simplistic blood test which is intended to help reduce the needs for unnecessary biopsies in the future.  If the test determines the risk factor is low, for example, then the physician, depending on his or her recommendation, may avoid a biopsy.  In the end, the test was designed to help avoid costly biopsies and reduce any associated side effects/complications which comes with these tests.

Santis Health notes the test is very new and has emerged within the last decade, only available in the United States.  As of 2017, UK insurance corporations will not pay for the test, but in the doctor’s mind, it is expensive, but it is a test worth doing to determine whether to have ongoing monitoring or to have radiotherapy after an operation if the biopsy of the prostate after the surgery shows a great risk.

The test is said to have a 94% accuracy rate when detecting aggressive cancer.

Tips to know

At this time, the testing is rather limited, but the official website offers an easy-to-use search tool to determine which lab in your area offers this kind of testing if your physician does not have the ability to draw a blood sample.

In the same Medscape.com article mentioned prior, the 4KScore, when compared to an online PCTP online calculator was ” incrementally better” at predicting a prebiopsy.

A medical study, “Finding the Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing: The 4Kscore Is a Novel Blood Test That Can Accurately Identify the Risk of Aggressive Prostate Cancer.” was published on the NCBI.

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network, in 2015, added the test to its recommended test when detecting prostate cancer.

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