Testing for prostate cancer is currently the most controversial issue in men’s health with Australian expert advisory groups providing conflicting advice.
Researchers at Bond University are seeking 30 men aged between 50 and 70 years to take part in a study aimed at identifying the information needed to help men decide whether to get tested for prostate cancer.
“This is a novel pilot study where we will compare knowledge, attitudes and decisions of men in either a community jury, who undergo two days of expert information, discussion and reflection, with a usual information group,” said Professor Chris Del Mar from Bond University’s Faculty of Health Sciences and Medicine.
Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in Australia. “The balance of benefits and harms in testing depends on individual risks and values, but to make these decisions men also need information.
“Currently it is unclear whether men are receiving enough information to make this important decision.”
The Bond University study will be conducted on the evening of Friday April 5, all day on Saturday April 6 and up until 2pm on Sunday, April 7.
Professor Del Mar said this is a unique opportunity for participants in the jury group to listen to experts discussing the case for and against routine prostate cancer testing; they will question the experts and discuss with other participants their thoughts on testing.
The usual information group will receive written information about prostate cancer testing from a recognised authority group. This group will participate through reading the material provided and then completing a questionnaire at three different times, the final one being in early July. These men will also have the opportunity to see the expert information in mid-July.
Professor Del Mar said the study aims to see what impact education and awareness has on the informed group of jury as opposed to the usual information group.” Professor Del Mar said participants needed to be available for the three days as they would be randomly selected for either group on the Friday afternoon.
Those interested in registering their interest to participate should contact: Rae Thomas, Centre for Research in Evidence-Based Practice, Bond University (07) 55955521, [email protected]