BALTIMORE, Jan. 24, 2018 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The American Urological Association (AUA) is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2018 AUA Data Grants. The AUA Data Grants fund innovative research studies to address key knowledge gaps and emerging research inquiries related to urologic patient care, workforce development and healthcare policy. Awardees receive a one-year grant of up to $25,000.

American Urological Association (PRNewsFoto/American Urological Association)

The AUA is honored to award the following researchers with 2018 AUA Data Grants:

Jeremy B. Myers, MD, associate professor of urology and co-director for the center of reconstructive urology and men’s health at University of Utah Health, as well as Darshan P. Patel, MD, resident physician in urology at the University of Utah Health, will study short- and long-term complications (incontinence, urinary obstruction, rectal complications, secondary malignancies, etc.) associated with treating men with localized prostate cancer. Utilizing links within the Utah Population Database (UPDB), as well as available datasets, their aim is to define long-term prostate cancer morbidity and mortality rates by comparing those who experience prostate cancer-related treatment complications from radiotherapy, surgery, or both, to those without prostate cancer. Findings from this study aim to further assist men in making informed decisions about their prostate cancer care or treatment.

Vernon M. Pais Jr., MD, associate professor of surgery with the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth, aims to evaluate opioid prescription and utilization patterns in kidney stone patients. Because kidney stones are recognized as a common source of acute severe pain, and have high recurrence rates, those who develop stones are potentially at risk for repeated exposure to opioids and narcotic overuse. Utilizing data from a national cohort of individuals diagnosed with kidney stones, Dr. Pais will assess current opioid dispensing and utilization patterns, as well as the risk factors associated with repeated opioid exposure. This information will be paramount to informing responsible prescribing by urologists.

Telemedicine has been suggested as a way to address rural-urban healthcare disparities in remote or sequestered populations. However, the current interplay of technology and oncologic healthcare outcomes has not been well characterized. Utilizing federal data on broadband internet access, rurality, urologist density and cancer mortality, Phillip M. Pierorazio, MD and Paige E. Nichols will establish geospatial relationships between internet access and urologic cancer mortality for all counties in the United States. Subsequently, they will incorporate state-level data on telemedicine regulations to predict the U.S. counties best suited to adopt urologic telemedicine services for care delivery.

Dr. Pierorazio is associate professor of urology and oncology, director of the division of testicular cancer and director of social media for the Brady Urological Institute at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Ms. Nichols is a medical student at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Maxine Sun, PhD, MPH, research scientist with the center for surgery and public health division of urology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Lank Center for Genitourinary Oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute,will investigate why prostate cancer contributes to the high economic burden in the United States and the costs associated with prostate cancer ranking among the top five cancers in contribution to national expenditures. As part of her research, Dr. Sun will study healthcare spending patterns associated with men diagnosed with prostate cancer. The results of her research will aid providers and policymakers in optimizing the value of care for men with prostate cancer.

«The AUA Data Grants Awards support innovative, population-based, data driven-research that will inform policymakers, payers, the urologic community and the public about key issues in urological care,» said Steven Schlossberg, MD, chair of the AUA Data Committee. «The work of these researchers will have a significant influence on the practice of urology.»

The AUA Board of Directors established the AUA Data Grants in 2014. AUA Data Grants recipients are determined through a comprehensive selection process overseen by an expert review panel. The AUA makes certain grants are awarded to individuals with studies demonstrating the greatest potential for impacting the practice of urology, improving patient outcomes or resulting in substantial changes in health care policy.

The AUA allocates $100,000 each year to fund four projects. All AUA members are eligible to apply.

About the American Urological Association
Founded in 1902 and headquartered near Baltimore, Maryland, the American Urological Association is a leading advocate for the specialty of urology, and has more than 21,000 members throughout the world. A premier urologic association, the AUA provides invaluable support to the urologic community as it pursues its mission of fostering the highest standards of urologic care through education, research and the formulation of health policy.

Contact:  Christine Frey, AUA
                 410-689-3731, [email protected]

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SOURCE American Urological Association