Although testicular cancer (TC) is the most common tumor in young men in Western countries, there is no official cancer detection/screening program for young men in Germany. The most important TC detection tool is self-examination of the testis. Hypothetically medical students may have a diagnosis lead time and detection superiority. This study was designed to analyze whether medical students have a possible knowledge advantage over students of other faculties concerning TC and to compare male and female cancer screening demeanor and mentality.
Male and female students of various faculties at the Goethe University Frankfurt/Main, Germany were invited to participate in this internet-based anonymous questionnaire with questions about TC awareness/knowledge, testicular (self) examination, and cancer screening behavior.
In total 1,049 students (329 medical and 716 non-medical students) completed the questionnaire. In general, medical students had a significantly higher TC knowledge, especially in the more advanced stages of their medical studies (year 3-6). About 50% of medical students had knowledge of TC whereas only 21.3% of non-medical students knew about the disease (p < 0.01). In addition, medical students conducted scrotal examinations more frequently (34.7%) than non-medical students (18.8%).
The knowledge about TC is low among students. In general, medical students are more aware of TC and perform more frequent testicular examinations compared to non-medical students. Female TC knowledge rises in the clinical part of studies to the same level as their male counterparts, with the result of more testicular partner examinations.
Current urology. 2020 Jun 23 [Epub]
Stefan Vallo, Jennifer Kloft, Jon Jones, Patricia John, Wael Khoder, Walid Mahmud, Jens Mani
Department of Urology, Hochtaunus-Kliniken, Bad Homburg, Germany., University of Frankfurt, Frankfurt, Germany., Department of Urology, University Hospital Cologne, Cologne, Germany., Department of Urology, University Hospital Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany.