High-ranking experts are associating to form the „International Prostate Cancer Group“
Cologne, January 24, 2007 – The West German Prostate Center together with the New York Prostate Institute has initiated a research association, the International Prostate Cancer Group (IPG). The association of prostate cancer specialists from Germany and the United States has formulated the goal to optimize the quality of prostate cancer treatment through scientific cooperation, information exchange, and patient counseling.
Dr. Stephan Neubauer, Chief Physician at the West German Prostate Center, and one of the initiators of IPG, explains: „In the foreground of this cooperation is the coordination and implementation of jointly conducted research projects in the area of diagnosis and therapy of prostate cancer, the patient consultation, and the continuing education and training for physicians.“
The focal point in the research is here brachytherapy, an innovative method of modern radiation therapy. The „internal“ radiation is done in Germany since 2000 for the treatment of prostate cancer, and has since then been recognized an especially minimally invasive procedure. With regard to this future-oriented form of treatment, the West German Prostate Center is one of the pioneers in Germany.
From research to praxis
Dr. Louis Potters, Medical Director of the renowned New York Prostate Institute underlines that „top research is today only possible through international cooperation“. The IPG utilizes an international network to conduct transnational scientific studies, and to discuss current research results together with specialized colleagues within the framework of international events. Potter continues „It is our aim, to transpose new medical findings into praxis according to the current The International Prostate Cancer Group aims to transpose new medical findings into praxis according to today’s needs and demands.“
To facilitate this goal, each expert of the International Prostate Cancer Group has access to anonymous patient data, and consequently has access to data of each individual case. The advantage is that if, there is an unclear diagnosis or a complicated tumor, this case will be discussed in an interdisciplinary panel, and the further course will jointly be decided upon. As Dr. Neubauer emphasizes, „ the subject-related exchange with experts from the United States and Europe helps us to also in the future prognosticate the course of the disease, and to offer the patient the kind of treatment that accords with his problems“. Vise versa, patients in Germany and in foreign countries do have the opportunity to utilize the medical knowledge of the experts, and to obtain an independent second opinion.
The core of the IPG is its homepage (www.i-pg.org), which continuously offers current information, and at the same time serves as a discussion platform for physicians, patients, and the general audience. As Dr. Neubauer put it: „The internet offers patients a flood of information, which is difficult to judge and categorize. Therefore, it is our goal to offer current information all around prostate cancer in a transparent and understandable way“.
The „International Prostate Cancer Group - IPG“ aims to include even more international know-how, and to collaborate closely with leading scientists and institutions in Europe, the United States, and Canada.