Section and Specialty Meetings: American Society for Men's Health Meeting 2021

By: Joel J. Heidelbaugh, MD, FAAFP, FACG | Posted on: 06 Aug 2021

This year’s annual American Society for Men’s Health (ASMH) meeting to be held at AUA2021 will build upon the framework of the 2014 AUA Men’s Health Checklist. This checklist has provided urologists and urology allied health professionals with a detailed guide toward addressing many aspects of nonurology-related health care components. But exactly how widespread is its use? The ASMH symposium will expand these recommendations, while presenting current evidence-based guidelines across all aspects of men’s health. Our aims are to more broadly define men’s health, propose who can deliver it and impact the lives of our male patients in a positive light–both above and below the waist.

In the “ Above the Waist” segment, the meeting will commence with a discussion of whether or not a true prevention strategy for men’s health exists and how we can encourage young men to engage with the health care system to promote a lifelong continuum of health care prevention and maintenance. This is an important question to ask, as medical professionals still struggle to define men’s health and recognize accountability for who “owns” men’s health. As the AUA Men’s Health Checklist and other resources become more accessible, urology providers will contemplate the scope of their practices outside of routine urologic care. As the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has provided the opportunity for men to gain insurance and access to the health care system, it has become increasingly important for young men to seek preventive services and engage in appropriate screening. Current United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) guidelines will be presented through a comprehensive review of the well male examination commonly utilized in primary care practices, focusing on screening for cancer, cardiovascular diseases and mental health. The latter area is exceptionally important as we continue to struggle to meet the needs of identifying and treating mental health conditions in our male patients. Finally, a discussion on current immunization recommendations and a highlight of special men’s health concerns relative to COVID-19 will conclude this section.

In the “ Below the Waist” segment to follow, presenters will highlight current diagnostic and treatment strategies in erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, Peyronie’s disease and benign prostatic hyperplasia. These discussions will highlight current evidence-based and cost-effective treatment strategies through a case-based approach to care. Our symposium will conclude with a point–counterpoint discussion on prostate cancer screening. While nearly all prostate cancer screening occurs in primary care practices, there is still a wide interpretation of both USPSTF and AUA guidelines–and how these guidelines should be discussed. Often, prostate cancer screening is avoided in primary care practices, given the 2012 to 2017 USPSTF guidelines that recommended against screening with prostate specific antigen or digital rectal examination. On one hand, the “don’t ask don’t tell” approach has been proposed, while on the other hand not engaging patients through shared decision making and current guideline review can be viewed as a “cop out.” We expect a robust discussion on both viewpoints!

The ASMH is committed to the advancement of men’s health on all levels from primary care to urological care, encompassing all important elements across the spectrum of disease. We welcome all health care practitioners in the charge toward improving outcomes in men’s health. We hope to see you in Las Vegas in September!

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