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Urologists May Not Use Best Therapies for Prostate Cancer

Incorrect questionnaire responses suggest many urologists not keeping pace with prostate cancer research

MONDAY, Dec. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Many urologists may not be up to date on the best evidence-based data for the hormonal management of prostate cancer, according to the results of a small study published in the December issue of Urology.

Gerald W. Chodak, M.D., of the Midwest Urology Research Foundation in Chicago, and colleagues sent questionnaires to 1,000 randomly selected American urologists, 181 of whom responded. They asked the urologists to select treatment options in four prostate cancer case scenarios involving the use of hormonal therapy and compared the responses to the current best evidence as guided by well-designed randomized controlled trials.

The researchers found that only 35 percent of questions were correctly answered according to evidence-based data, and that only 13 percent of respondents correctly answered more than two questions.

"Assuming that these findings prove to be representative of practicing urologists, the question remains, how does one explain these results?" the authors ask. "The most obvious and troubling explanation is that urologists are so overwhelmed with publications to read that they are simply unable to keep up."

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