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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Are Profits Driving Treatments For Prostate Cancer?

A prostate cancer patient prepares for IMRT treatment. (Upstate Medical University)

Cases in California, Washington, Maryland and South Carolina are leading investigators and Medicare to ask if financial incentives are influencing treatments doctors recommend for prostate cancer.

More and more urologists are recommending an expensive radiation therapy called intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) for treatment of prostate cancer.

IMRT backers say use is spreading because it works better, with fewer side effects than other technologies.

But urologists like Dr. Matthew Cooperberg of the University of California, San Francisco told Bloomberg news that “IMRT is overused.”

Cooperberg said that “about half the 50,000 men who receive IMRT for prostate cancer each year don’t need it or don’t gain anything from it that exceeds cheaper treatment.”

The prostate is the gland that helps produce semen. About 242 thousand men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year in the U.S., making it the most common U.S. cancer.


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Experts share a range of perspectives on how to combat the Islamic State militant group, and the role the U.S. should play.

Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

November 27 Comment

Books To Give As Gifts This Year

If you're looking to give a book to a friend or family member this holiday, NPR Books editor Petra Mayer shares her picks.

November 26 8 Comments

Arlo Guthrie Celebrates 50 Years Of ‘Alice’s Restaurant’

Listening to the 18-minute musical monologue has been a Thanksgiving tradition among folk music fans for decades.

November 26 Comment

One Refugee’s Story Of Coming To America

Paul Okot vividly remembers landing at JFK airport in New York at 7 years old, after fleeing violence in southern Sudan.

November 25 3 Comments

Rapper Le1f Finds Struggle And Moral Diversity In American Music

We've been asking musicians what they think of when they think "American music." Today we hear from Khalif Diouf, aka Le1f.