Prostate cancer screening and shared decision-making preferences among African-American members of the Prince Hall Masons



Objectives: Shared decision making (SDM) is recommended as one method to assist men in making an informed decision about prostate cancer screening (PCS). SDM preferences for PCS have not been evaluated among African-American (AA) men. Given AA men's increased risk and the uncertainty surrounding screening, it is critical to determine how to assist AA men in making an informed decision. We assessed the extent to which a sample of AA men wished to engage in SDM regarding PCS and the demographic and psychological characteristics associated with SDM preferences.

Methods: Participants completed a telephone interview that covered demographic and medical information, SDM preferences, PCS knowledge, decisional conflict, and satisfaction with previous screening decisions. Subjects included 286 AA men aged 40–70, who were members of a Masonic organization.

Results: Fifty-seven percent preferred SDM, 36% preferred to make their own decision, and 7% wanted their doctor to decide. A higher level of education and older age were associated with preferring SDM (p<0.05), while men with greater PCS knowledge were more likely to prefer to make the decision independently (p<0.05).

Conclusions: Results suggest that physicians need to be prepared to discuss PCS with their patients. Further, more attention may be needed to engage younger, less educated, and less knowledgeable men as they may be less likely to discuss PCS. This understanding of AA men's preferences for PCS decisions helps to clarify the issues that health professionals need to consider when attempting to assist AA men in making a PCS decision. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.