1 Man2Man | Fall 2008 : Page 2

is published by the Prostate Cancer Centre. We may be reached at: Prostate Cancer Centre Dr. Gerald Brock is a urologist at St. Joseph’s Health Care, London Clinical Trials: A Necessary Part of Medical Advancement I have been involved as an investigator and clinical study designer for over a decade and am frequently asked by my patients whether there is any value in this type of research endeavor. When asked to participate in clinical investigations, most of my patients simply read the informed consent document, take a copy home and willingly join in. While we do our best to provide these men and women with the rationale, risks and benefits of being involved, most sign-on because we ask and feel that if we’re doing the study there must be a good reason. Recently, a large multi-study evaluation of vitamin E, called a meta-analysis, was carried out involving almost 200,000 individuals. In contrast to the general belief that vitamin E prevents heart disease and helps circulation, the data showed an increased death rate that was higher as the vitamin E dose increased. The value of the clinical trial here is without doubt. I was part of the team that conceptualized and carried out a trial which took place in almost 100 medical centers world-wide and enrolled almost 650 men. We evaluated the effect of vardenafil (Levitra, a drug similar to Viagra or Cialis which is part of the class called PDE5i) on rehabilitation of erectile function in men following radical prostatectomy. In our study, important new insights into how best to regain erectile function following prostate cancer surgery was studied. In contrast to what was generally believed, this report demonstrates that regular sexual activity, or attempts at sexual activity, seems to be a key element in regaining sexual function. Use of vardenafil on a regular basis likely supports the health of the blood vessels’ lining and muscle content of the penis, and facilitates the return of near-normal sexual function during the initial period following surgery when the nerves are recovering from the trauma of the operation. We believe this period usually lasts between 6-12 months. This study clearly showed, in contrast to what earlier animal experiments had reported, that daily use of PDE5i’s in these men may not be as beneficial as the on-demand use, ideally a couple of times per week. Clinical trials allow investigators to answer important medical questions and treat patients based on data, rather than beliefs. The men and women who provide their consent and agree to participate in these studies help advance the field more often than they know. 800 Commissioners Road, London, Ontario N6A 4G5 T: 519.685.8448 F: 519.685.8120 None of the conents of this newsletter may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form by any means without the permission of the publisher. This publication should not be used for purposes of self-diagnosis or as an alternative to medical care. If you suspect you have cancer, consult a physician immediately. Letters-to-the-editor or ideas for articles may be submitted, in writing, to the above address. EDITORIAL BOARD Dr Glenn Bauman Medical Director, Genitourinary Disease Site Team Chair, Dept of Oncology London Regional Cancer Program London Health Sciences Centre Dr Joseph Chin Chief, Surgical Oncology London Regional Cancer Program London Health Sciences Centre John Hastie Patient Representative Dr Stephen Pautler Uro-Oncologist, St Joseph’s Health Care, London Wendy Shoff, R.N. Research Coordinator Division of Urology London Health Sciences Centre Dr Eric Winquist Medical Director, Clinical Cancer Research Program London Regional Cancer Program London Health Sciences Centre Supported by: The University of Western Ontario, Division of Urology. Design and printing by: Annex Publishing & Printing Inc., Simcoe, Ontario

Brock Talk

Clinical Trials: A Necessary Part of Medical Advancement<br /> <br /> I have been involved as an investigator and clinical study designer for over a decade and am frequently asked by my patients whether there is any value in this type of research endeavor. When asked to participate in clinical investigations, most of my patients simply read the informed consent document, take a copy home and willingly join in. While we do our best to provide these men and women with the rationale, risks and benefits of being involved, most sign-on because we ask and feel that if we’re doing the study there must be a good reason.<br /> <br /> Recently, a large multi-study evaluation of vitamin E, called a meta-analysis, was carried out involving almost 200,000 individuals.<br /> <br /> In contrast to the general belief that vitamin E prevents heart disease and helps circulation, the data showed an increased death rate that was higher as the vitamin E dose increased. The value of the clinical trial here is without doubt.<br /> <br /> I was part of the team that conceptualized and carried out a trial which took place in almost 100 medical centers world-wide and enrolled almost 650 men. We evaluated the effect of vardenafil (Levitra, a drug similar to Viagra or Cialis which is part of the class called PDE5i) on rehabilitation of erectile function in men following radical prostatectomy.<br /> <br /> In our study, important new insights into how best to regain erectile function following prostate cancer surgery was studied. In contrast to what was generally believed, this report demonstrates that regular sexual activity, or attempts at sexual activity, seems to be a key element in regaining sexual function. Use of vardenafil on a regular basis likely supports the health of the blood vessels’ lining and muscle content of the penis, and facilitates the return of near-normal sexual function during the initial period following surgery when the nerves are recovering from the trauma of the operation. We believe this period usually lasts between 6-12 months. This study clearly showed, in contrast to what earlier animal experiments had reported, that daily use of PDE5i’s in these men may not be as beneficial as the on-demand use, ideally a couple of times per week.<br /> <br /> Clinical trials allow investigators to answer important medical questions and treat patients based on data, rather than beliefs. The men and women who provide their consent and agree to participate in these studies help advance the field more often than they know.

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