American Urological Association

View all recommendations from this society

Released February 21, 2013

Don’t treat an elevated PSA with antibiotics for patients not experiencing other symptoms.

It had previously been suggested that a course of antibiotics might lead to a decrease in an initially raised PSA and reduce the need for prostate biopsy; however, there is a lack of clinical studies to show that antibiotics actually decrease PSA levels. It should also be noted that a decrease in PSA does not indicate an absence of prostate cancer. There is no information available on the implications of deferring a biopsy following a decrease in PSA.

These items are provided solely for informational purposes and are not intended as a substitute for consultation with a medical professional. Patients with any specific questions about the items on this list or their individual situation should consult their physician.

How The List Was Created

1–5: The American Urological Association (AUA) established a committee to review evidence from the association’s guidelines and identify potential topics for nomination to the AUA’s Choosing Wisely list. The committee reviewed a number of recommendations and through a consensus process identified the five tests or procedures that should be questioned. These recommendations were reviewed and approved by the AUA Board of Directors.

6–10: Following its previous successful participation in Choosing Wisely in 2013, the American Urological Association (AUA) established a new committee in 2014 to develop a second list of recommendations. The group sought input from the AUA membership in addition to drafting potential suggestions after studying evidence from the association’s evidence-based clinical practice guidelines and other clinical documents. The committee reviewed all recommendations and narrowed them to a list of fifteen possibilities. Again, the committee sought AUA member input by asking members to vote for their top five selections from the list of candidate recommendations. After the votes were tallied, the list of five recommendations was determined. These recommendations were reviewed and approved by the AUA Board of Directors in February 2015.

AUA’s disclosure and conflict of interest policy can be found at


Heldwein FL, Teloken PE, Hartmann AA, Rhoden EL, Teloken C. Antibiotics and observation have a similar impact on asymptomatic patients with a raised PSA. BJU Int [Internet]. 2011;107(10):1576-81.

Stopiglia RM, Ferreira U, Silva Jr. MM, Matheus WE, Denardi F, Reis LO. Prostate specific antigen decrease and prostate cancer diagnosis: Antibiotic versus placebo prospective randomized clinical trial. J Urol [Internet]. 2010 3;183(3):940-5.