Physician perspectives on the importance of facts men ought to know about prostate-specific antigen testing

Evelyn C Y Chan, Sally W. Vernon, Michelle C. Haynes, Frederick T. O'Donnell, Chul Ahn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To determine physicians' rating of the importance of key facts men ought to know about prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening and whether there are differences by specialty. PARTICIPANTS: A nationwide random sample of internists, family physicians, and urologists stratified by physician specialty from The Official ABMS Directory of Board-Certified Medical Specialists 2000 Edition. MEASUREMENTS: Internists (N = 139), family physicians (N = 160), and urologists (N = 151) were asked to rate how important it is for men to know 17 facts about PSA screening using a 5-point Likert scale. MAIN RESULTS: Of 769 eligible physicians, 450 responded, for an overall response rate of 59%. Urologists and nonurologists differed in rating how important it was for men to know 9 of the 17 key facts. Eight of the nine statements that urologists and nonurologists disagreed upon concerned facts reflecting uncertainty. Nonurologists were more likely than urologists to rate facts reflecting uncertainty as highly important for men to know. These included statements about prostate cancer risk, screening with PSA, and treatment. CONCLUSIONS: Despite professional guidelines supporting informed decision making, the importance of facts men ought to know about PSA testing differ by physician specialty. Systematic differences may reflect differences in professional guidelines about PSA testing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)350-356
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of General Internal Medicine
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2003



  • Informed consent
  • Prostate cancer screening

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine

Cite this