NYMC Faculty Publications

Testicular Cancer Knowledge and Viewpoints of American Men

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Urology Practice

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INTRODUCTION: We sought to better understand the baseline knowledge and practices of the general population regarding testicular cancer (TC) and testicular self-examination (TSE) in an effort to understand whether current screening guidelines reflect their viewpoint. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) currently recommends against TSE for TC screening due to a lack of data to support a benefit. Early detection of TC may reduce the required burden of therapy and associated long-term toxicities. METHODS: This was a cross-sectional survey study. Participants (median age 33 years, IQR 28-39) were recruited via Amazon Mechanical Turk, a validated crowdsourcing platform used to recruit minimally compensated participants. RESULTS: A total of 250 men rated themselves as "somewhat unknowledgeable" about TC, with no respondents considering themselves "very knowledgeable." Only 26.4% of men knew that TC was curable most of the time. Despite 90.8% of men feeling that their doctor had some role in discussing TC/TSE, only 17.2% had discussed these topics with their doctor. Even after being informed of the rationale behind USPSTF recommendations, only 8% of men thought that potential false positives of TSE would be more important than the rare chance of finding early TC. CONCLUSIONS: American men do not feel knowledgeable about TC, have a favorable attitude toward TSE and want their doctor to discuss these topics. Shared decision making regarding TC screening is warranted given the low risk of harm and patient interest, and continued accrual of data on this topic is necessary given the lack of prospective work to date.