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Clin Oncol (R Coll Radiol). 2013 Mar;25(3):178-89. doi: 10.1016/j.clon.2012.09.001. Epub 2012 Oct 15.

Nasty or Nice? Findings from a UK Survey to evaluate the impact of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) clinical guidelines on the management of prostate cancer.

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Department of Clinical Oncology, University College Hospital London, London, UK.



Although the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence clinical guideline 58 (CG58) for prostate cancer management was expected to have a positive effect, several recommendations raised concern among UK physicians. We conducted a survey of UK oncologists in 2008 and a second, similar survey in 2010 to assess views on these recommendations and to evaluate the change in opinion over time.


Two semi-structured questionnaires were issued by the British Uro-oncology Group to society members in September 2008 and October 2010.


In 2008, 61 UK oncologists completed the survey; 60% agreed that CG58 would make a positive contribution towards improving patient care. There was strong opposition towards active surveillance as the first-line treatment for men with low-risk localised prostate cancer (49% disagreement); implementing 5 yearly flexible sigmoidoscopy post-prostate radiotherapy (51% disagreement); offering follow-up outside of the hospital (e.g. by general practitioners in primary care) for men with a stable prostate-specific antigen for ≥2 years (44% disagreement); and recommendations against docetaxel retreatment (47% disagreement) or bisphosphonate use (58% disagreement). In 2010, 77 UK oncologists completed the survey. The results were largely consistent with 2008, although several recommendations, particularly for localised disease, seem to have promoted a change in clinical practice, suggesting that they are facilitating a standardised approach. Compared with 2008, the 2010 results indicate a shift in favour of active surveillance (80% agreement) and primary care follow-up (59% agreement), but increasing opposition for docetaxel retreatment (57% disagreement). Opinions remained divided for flexible sigmoidoscopy and bisphosphonates.


Despite initial concerns, the CG58 seems to have had a positive impact on prostate cancer management in the UK, with adherence likely facilitating a standardised approach. However, with new data emerging, these findings underscore the need to regularly update guidelines. A revision of the CG58 is anticipated by 2014.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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