Men's Knowledge of Testicular Cancer May Be Rising

Awareness up since 1986, but small proportion of men perform regular testis self-exams
By Eric Metcalf
HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, Nov. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Compared to a few decades ago, men may be more aware of issues surrounding testis cancer, including symptoms and cure rates, and may be more likely to perform self-examination, according to research published in the October issue of Urology.

Rowan G. Casey, M.D., of the Adelaide and Meath Hospital Dublin in Ireland, and colleagues analyzed survey data from 677 men -- who answered questions testing their knowledge about testis cancer and whether they performed testis self-examination -- and compared the data with similar research from 1986. The men ranged in age from 18 to 67, with an average age of 44.9 years.

The researchers found that more men in the recent study were aware of the existence of testis cancer (99.4 versus 68 percent), and more men were more aware of potential symptoms (71 versus 23 percent). In the recent group, 48.2 percent felt that the disease had a high cure rate, compared to 14 percent of men in 1986. Only 4 percent performed self-examination regularly, but this represented a modest increase over the 1.3 percent in the earlier group.

"The improved level of knowledge of testis cancer since the original study is gratifying, as is the increased prevalence of testis self-examination. This is possibly because of high-profile public figures with testis cancer and wider availability of educational material. However, the rates of monthly testicular self-examination still fall below recommended rates but overall are commensurate with other studies," the authors write.

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