Karen Nash is a medical reporter and media consultant based in Monroeville, PA.
What is your reaction to the new AMA president describing health care as being in crisis?
"The burden of preauthorization, reimbursements not keeping up with inflation, and consequently, our abilities to staff and maintain our offices and pay our employees at appropriate levels are also affecting our ability to care for patients," said urologist Ronald P. Kaufman Jr, MD.
Are you considering whether artificial intelligence (AI) is coming to your practice and how it might fit in?
How do you feel about in-person AUA meetings and the new practice guidelines introduced there?
"Pandemic meetings were different because they were virtual. To be honest, those weren’t really good. I prefer to go to the meeting and be with other people and see them face-to-face," says Robert Gossett, MD.
Do your patients ask you about medical information you know is wrong? How do you handle it?
"I’m frank with them. If it’s something I haven’t heard of, I tell them. I also tell them where I get my information," says Kevin Krughoff, MD.
A year after the end of Roe v Wade, are you seeing increased interest in vasectomies?
"A couple [of] times recently, I’ve done 6 in 1 day. A couple weeks ago, I did 4, the week before that, 5. So I would say I’ve seen an uptick," says urologist Bradford Black, MD.
What is your reaction to the American Cancer Society’s statistics showing a rise in advanced prostate cancer?
"The pendulum is swinging back. It’s all about provider education, hammering home the point that we have to do appropriate screening," says urologist Ryan Hankins, MD.
What was your reaction when you heard urology was considered the most stressful job in the United States?
"It’s hard for me to believe urology’s the most stressful job, although it’s very stressful," says Aaron Bayne, MD.
What do you hope/expect to see in urology or in your practice this year?
"What I hope to see next year is continuing improvement in standards of care when we’re talking about [prostate-specific antigen] screening and prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment," says urologist Michael Cox, MD.
What do you think about a recent trend noting a growing number of patients calling physicians by their first names?
"In the office, absolutely, I should be called by my profession," says one urologist.
What new guideline or presentation from the 2022 AUA Annual Meeting will have the biggest impact on urologists?
"We increasingly see the evolving role of ‘precision medicine’ in urology, using genetic and genomic testing to guide [management] for a variety of diseases, particularly bladder and prostate cancer," says 1 urologist.
What do you tell your patients about all the new erectile dysfunction treatments being advertised to the public?
“Community urologists need to interact more intimately with academic urologists so all of us have a voice in this direct-to-consumer conversation," says 1 urologist.
Are you seeing more health care workers planning to leave medicine?
"We’ve had no trouble recruiting because we focus on creating a positive culture with our team," says 1 urologist.
What’s been the biggest change in treatments for UTIs and/or incontinence over the past decade?
"With urge incontinence, the biggest advantage over the past few years is the emergence, and the proven efficacy, of the β-3 agonists, which are much better medications than the anticholinergic," says 1 urologist.
Do you think patients on active surveillance would be willing to participate in a high-intensity interval exercise training program?
"My experience with patients who are on surveillance, who meet the criteria for active surveillance, [is that they] tend to be younger and healthier patients, so I don’t see why not," says one urologist.
What is the role of prostate-specific antigen screening in your practice?
"I use PSA testing to make sure patients with high-risk prostate cancer, specifically, and advanced prostate cancer, or even metastatic prostate cancer, don’t go undiagnosed," says 1 urologist.
With all the attention paid to prostate cancer research and treatment, do other aspects of urology get the research they need?
"There are many aspects of urology that get equal attention. Cancer will always attract attention and dollars, but it’s trickier to solve," says 1 urologist.
Are pandemic-related worker shortages affecting your urology practice?
"Our hospital doesn’t have a [COVID-19 vaccination] mandate. A mandate would cost us a handful of nurses," says 1 urologist.
What are your thoughts on proposals that physicians should communicate with their patients by text?
"Without any real data [showing] that this improves anything, it just makes us too accessible," says one urologist.
How has the resurgence of the pandemic affected your urology practice?
"Patients started coming out with the vaccine but now they’re retreating. It’s difficult to get individuals to follow up," says 1 urologist.
What’s been your experience with treating patients who are transgender?
"In my system, if one were to act in an untoward way toward a transgender patient, there would be a significant problem," says 1 urologist.
How do you make your urology practice staff efficient and effective for physicians and patients?
"When we consider potential employees, we look specifically for people who are most likely to care about the people we’re taking care of," says one urologist.
3 urologists discuss coping with increased stress caused by the pandemic
Urology Times reached out to 3 urologists and asked them, "How did you cope with the increased stress the pandemic has placed on your life?"
3 urologists share their impression of virtual meetings and conferences
"My main complaint about virtual lectures is the loss of camaraderie of seeing colleagues face to face and having casual conversations," says one urologist.
What is your clearest memory from the day you received your urology residency match?
“I remember being, I guess, relieved that I matched. It’s so competitive. It’s never a sure thing. You match somewhere; I remember relief with that," says 1 urologist.
Do you use urodynamics when determining when to insert a sling following a prostatectomy?
"We typically do urodynamics when something’s unclear and confusing. I don’t always do urodynamics before doing a sling," says 1 urologist.
Do you prefer dusting or basketing when removing kidney/ureteral stones?
"Everything comes down to patient selection and location of the stones," says one urologist.
What do you hope to see happening in urology in 2021?
"I’m just praying for it to go back to the way it was in 2019, honestly," says 1 urologist.
Urologists discuss their music preferences for the OR
"I listen to whatever my staff actually wants to listen to, except I say ‘no rap’ " says one urologist.
Is your urology practice prepared for evaluation/management coding changes in 2021?
“It’s going to be a slow process for hospitals to give the proper information to their physicians so that when we’re moving on to the new coding system, we’re not doing extra work," says one urologist.
Besides the expansion of telemedicine, how has COVID-19 affected your practice?
"We’re taking it in stride. We don’t overbook to the point where we’re overwhelmed, and we’re not exhausting ourselves," says one urologist.
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