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Conference Report

An admirably mixed group of enthusiasts including urologists, GPs, public health physicians, nurses, epidemiologists and economists (plus the odd biochemist) enjoyed a lively first Bandolier conference in the congenial rural surroundings of Eynsham Hall. Those of you who couldn't get there missed one of the best medical meetings of the year.

Dr Logan Holtgrewe, a recent past chairman of the American Urologists Association, gave clear and entertaining accounts of US practice in BPH and prostate cancer. He emphasised the value of guidelines drawn up for BPH (see Bandolier 11 ) in changing practice for the better.

Other speakers (including Logan's British equivalents) covered the size of the problem in the UK, and existing practice, including the role of shared care in the management of patients. The sessions on prostate cancer emphasised the problems of screening, and especially the interpretation of apparently simple PSA results, as well as the wide variation in current practice. The only proposal that met with universal approval was the need for well planned controlled trials which included economic as well as clinical evaluations; the need to wait until better diagnostic tests and treatments are available was a source of some controversy.

A fuller report of the meeting may be found here .

This was an exciting and useful meeting. We have received much useful comment and advice from the participants about what is most useful in getting, evaluating and using evidence. More Bandolier conferences are in the planning stage, so watch out for details in the new year.

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