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Mar 3, 2022

Dr. Neeraj Agarwal, ASCO Daily News editor-in-chief, and director of the Genitourinary Cancers Program at the University of Utah’s Huntsman Cancer Institute, highlights key studies on disparities in GU cancers featured at the 2022 ASCO Genitourinary Cancers Symposium.


ASCO Daily News: Hello and welcome to the ASCO Daily News Podcast. I'm Geraldine Carroll, a reporter for the ASCO Daily News. In today's episode, Dr. Neeraj Agarwal, the ASCO Daily News editor in chief, will highlight compelling studies on disparities in GU cancers featured at the 2022 ASCO Genitourinary (GU) Cancers Symposium. Dr. Agarwal has no conflicts relating to the topic of this episode and his full disclosures are available in the show notes. Disclosures of all guests on the podcast can be found in our transcripts at 

Dr. Neeraj Agarwal: Hello and welcome to the ASCO Daily News Podcast. I'm Dr. Neeraj Agarwal, the director of the Genitourinary Cancers Program and professor of medicine at the University of Utah Huntsman Cancer Institute. So, I'd like to start with Abstract 20 presented by Dr. Alicia Morgans from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Multiple population-based studies have reported a higher incidence of prostate cancer in Black men. [This disease] usually presents with aggressive features, at an earlier age, and is associated with higher mortality rates compared to White men. In contrast, multiple reports suggest that Black men with advanced prostate cancer also have better survival outcomes to novel hormonal therapies compared to White men. Using electronic medical records retrieved from a urology specialty database, Dr. Alicia Morgans investigated whether improved survival outcomes in Black men treated with enzalutamide are due to better responses compared to White men. So eligible patients, who are chemotherapy and abiraterone naive and included 214 Black men and 1,332 White men with advanced prostate cancer. 


Reserves from a multivariate analysis were adjusted for baseline characteristics and indicated a statistically significant delay in clinical progression-free survival for Black men treated with enzalutamide compared to White men. This supports the argument that given equal access to care, Black men may respond similarly or better than White men to treatment for advanced prostate cancer. The next abstract addressing disparities in GU cancers was Abstract 444 presented by Dr. Samuel Washington from UCSF School of Medicine. Radical cystectomy remains the gold standard for muscle-invasive bladder cancer, yet confers significant health care costs. Prior work on the impact of cost commonly relied on comparisons by insurance status and income. Few studies have examined the relationship between the net worth of the household and the encounter type, such as outpatient versus inpatient encounters. As we also know, outpatient encounters are usually cheaper or less expensive than more expensive inpatient encounters. 


So, in this intriguing and novel study, Dr. Samuel Washington presented a real-world analysis of demographics, household net worth, health plan cost, out-of-pocket cost, and total health care cost accrued from the day of admission to 90 days after radical cystectomy for muscle-invasive bladder cancer. This was the largest study of its kind and included more than 140,000 commercially insured patients to examine variations in health care utilization by net worth in 90 days after radical cystectomy. Results are very interesting and indicate that patients with lower household net worth were at a greater risk for an acute inpatient encounter and thus higher medical cost, while patients with greater household net worth had greater odds of office visits or outpatient encounters, which are associated with lower cost. So, these findings indicate that a lower household network continues to be a significant factor in health care utilization and higher health care costs, even within a commercially insured patient population. So very interesting findings indeed and these findings definitely should pay for further future studies involving or looking at this aspect of disparities. Thank you very much for your kind attention. 


ASCO Daily News: That was Dr. Neeraj Agarwal of the University of Utah's Huntsman Cancer Institute. If you've enjoyed this series, please take a moment to rate and review us wherever you get your podcasts. 



Dr. Neeraj Agarwal: 

Consulting or Advisory Role: Pfizer, Medivation/Astellas, Bristol-Myers Squibb, AstraZeneca, Nektar, Lilly, Bayer, Pharmacyclics, Foundation Medicine, Astellas Pharma, Lilly, Exelixis, AstraZeneca, Merck, Novartis, lily, Eisai, Seattle Genetics, EMD Serono, Janssen Oncology, AVEO, Calithera Biosciences, MEI Pharma, Genentech, Astellas Pharma, Foundation Medicine, and Gilead Sciences  


Research Funding (Institution): Bayer, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Takeda, Pfizer, Exelixis, Amgen, AstraZeneca, Calithera Biosciences, Celldex, Eisai, Genentech, Immunomedics, Janssen, Merck, Lilly, Nektar, ORIC Pharmaceuticals, ORIC Pharmaceuticals, CRISPR therapeutics, and Arvinas  


Disclaimer: The purpose of this podcast is to educate and to inform this is not a substitute for professional medical care and is not intended for use in the diagnosis or treatment of individual conditions. Guests on this podcast express their own opinions, experience, and conclusions. Guest statements on the podcast do not express the opinions of ASCO. The mention of any product, service, organization, activity, or therapy should not be construed as an ASCO endorsement.