Published: July 16, 2010
Updated: Nov. 29, 2010
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By DukeHealth.org staff
Patients with prostate cancer now have several new interactive web tools known as risk calculators to help them better understand their disease.
These tools are based on research done at Duke and are designed to help patients with important decisions they need to make as they undergo treatment and recovery.
The first risk calculator is for men who have already undergone radical prostatectomy, or surgical removal of the prostate gland.
The calculator uses personal information supplied by the patient to help predict recurrence-free survival rates at one, two, five, and 10-year intervals.
The second risk calculator was designed for men who are newly-diagnosed with prostate cancer and who are weighing various treatment options.
It uses demographic and clinical data at the time of biopsy to calculate the likelihood of having an advanced stage tumor that has extended beyond the prostate gland.
This third prediction model measures the probability of developing metastases within five to eight years of the current follow-up visit for patients treated with radical prostatectomy.
While the nomogram applies to most prostatectomy patients, it does not apply to patients that were treated with radiation therapy prior to radical prostatectomy.
“We in the Duke Prostate Center (DPC) want our patients to be equal partners in their care and we hope they can use these new risk calculators to help them better understand their options,” says Judd Moul, MD, professor and chief of the Duke Division of Urologic Surgery and director of the DPC.
Florian Schroeck, MD, current chief resident in the division and lead author of the first risk calculator adds, “We further hope that the ease and accessibility of these web-based tools will help promote patient satisfaction.”