Objective: This study evaluates self-reported changes in knowledge of prostate cancer (CaP), CaP screening behavior and other health-related activities in men whose brothers have been diagnosed with prostate cancer and to characterize those demographic subgroups of siblings at particular risk of failure to change their behavior. Methods: 112 men were surveyed to self-assess their knowledge of CaP both before and after their brother's diagnosis. In addition, siblings were questioned with regard to other health-related behaviors before and after their brother's diagnosis. Demographic characteristics including age, race, income, and area of residence were also reported. Results were analyzed to determine how a brother's diagnosis with CaP affects changes in prostate cancer knowledge, screening behavior and other health related activities in these high-risk patients. Results: The impact of a brother's diagnosis of CaP affects only 40% of siblings with regard to CaP knowledge. This knowledge appears to translate into increased screening behavior and other-health-related activity in these men. Unfortunately, more than half of men have no change in CaP knowledge and correspondingly no change in screening behavior. Siblings who are older, earn less, and live in rural areas have a lower baseline knowledge of CaP and are less likely to improve their self-assessed knowledge. On regression analysis, correlates of improvement in CaP knowledge included (1) those discussing with their primary physician (OR = 6.6), (2) Caucasians (OR = 2.7) and (3) non-smokers (OR = 3.1). Improvements in prostate cancer knowledge were found to be predictive of subsequent participation in CaP screening and annual physical exams. Conclusions: Increased attention should be paid to siblings of CaP patients in efforts to improve their knowledge and thereby participation in screening as these patients are at an increased risk of development of this disease. Efforts should be made to educate siblings who are older, of lower income, African American, and rural residents with regard to CaP, as these subgroups appear less likely to change their knowledge and screening behavior despite their sibling's diagnosis.
- Prostate cancer
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