Local tumour ablation for localized kidney cancer: Practice patterns in Canada
Introduction: Local tumor ablation (LTA) is a recommended option for the treatment of localized kidney cancer in nonsurgical candidates. We performed a survey to describe the practice patterns of this procedure in Canada.
Methods: An electronic survey was sent by email to all urologists registered to the Canadian Urological Association (CUA). Urologists were queried about general demographic information, LTA availability at their institution (and reasons of non-availability, if it was the case) as well as the type and context of LTA use.
Results: Overall, 103 individual responses were obtained (response rate of 19.5%). Of those, 58 (56.3%) had access to LTA at their institution. Urologists who had access to LTA were more likely to work at an academic institution (69 vs. 16%, p<0.001). Among individuals who did not use LTA, the main reasons were the lack of staff, such as radiologists, who can assist and/or perform the procedure (64%); and the lack of expertise with the procedure (62%). Among urologists who had access to LTA, percutaneous radiofrequency and cryoablation were the most commonly used (72% and 21%, respectively). However, urologists were rarely involved in those procedures (12%).
Conclusions: In this national survey, we found that a significant proportion of Canadian urologists did not have access to LTA. We also found that when LTA was performed, urologists were rarely involved in the procedures. Those findings represent significant areas for improvement in the access to LTA. The conclusions of this study are limited by the low response rate.
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