Project Title: Assessing Patients’ Perceptions on the Role Pharmaceutical and Medical Supply Companies Play in their Interactions with Physicians
Faculty Mentor’s Name: Dr. Louis Moy
Student’s Name: Jack Curtis
Pharmaceutical and medical supply companies have long held a spotlight in mainstream media due to ever-increasing costs of prescription drugs and an abundance of advertising.1 Much research has been done on the relationship between physicians and pharmaceutical and medical supply companies due to the potential of an actual or a perceived conflict of interest; however, there is a lack of knowledge in assessing how patients think this relationship may impact their health care. This knowledge is beneficial since trust is critical in establishing a positive and effective relationship between physicians and patients.
A 1995 study investigated how patients perceive the practice of physicians accepting gifts from pharmaceutical companies, and the results showed that patients were “generally uninformed” about this common occurrence.2 The study concluded that further research should be done on the matter.2 In a 2011 survey, 55% of the respondents thought that their physician accepted gifts from pharmaceutical companies and that there was a lower level of associated trust in physicians who accepted gifts.3
A conflict of interest may arise due to the physician receiving aid from these companies while his or her duty first and foremost is to provide the best possible care to the patient. A 2006 study found that 33% of physicians reported that they believed “their own decision to prescribe a drug would probably be influenced by accepting drug samples.”4 Furthermore, a majority of physicians also believed that other doctors would be more susceptible than they were to changing their prescribing habits based on receiving these gifts.4 In addition, patients and physicians have historically had different views on the matter, where “patients feel pharmaceutical gifts are more influential and less appropriate than do their physicians.”5
Physicians seem to understand the role that pharmaceutical and medical supply companies play in their interactions with patients, but what the patient thinks of this interaction and the role it plays on their health needs further analysis.
Project Title: Management of Hydronephrosis following Urinary Diversion
Faculty Mentor’s Name: Dr. Paul Crispen
Student’s Name: Katelyn Carty
The study will evaluate the management of hydronephrosis following urinary diversion with an emphasis on surgical outcomes. The primary role of the student research will be data collection via review of patients’ s electronic medical records on EPIC. Authorship on abstracts and publications resulting from the research is anticipated within the next year.
Project Title: Outcomes of protected time for research during urology residency on numbers of academic publications
Faculty Mentor’s Name: Dr. Louis Moy
Student’s Name: Alexander Fethiere
There has been research on the topics of research attitudes, protected research time, and the dichotomy of the clinician scientist with respect to residents. We are interested in the concept, execution, and consequence of protected research time. Protected research time is one of a multitude of ways a residency program can help promote the scientific development of residents. Protected research time is usually organized as a block or can be longitudinal.
Within the literature, there has been some correlation of protected research time providing benefit to residents in surgical specialties in the form of increased numbers of publications. Studies of this type have not been conducted in the field of urology. Finding ways to promote the development of clinician scientist, regardless of whether they practice of research during career, is beneficial to the evolution of physicians and the treatment of the patients.
Project Title: Skin complications following hypospadias repairs
Faculty Mentor’s Name: Dr. Romano DeMarco
Student’s Name: Hasan Jhaveri
Hypospadias is a congenital anomaly of the penis which typically has 3 prominent physical findings: 1. Abnormal proximal position of the urethral meatus, 2. Ventral penile curvature, 3. Abnormal and limited ventral shaft skin. Hypospadias is a common anomaly in boys, with an incidence of 1 in 250 births. Boys with this condition typically have surgery around 6 months of age. In the vast majority of cases, surgery involves significant skin mobilization of the shaft and reconfiguration to create a neourethra, correct the penile curvature, and cover the penile shaft following reconstructive penile surgery. Unfortunately due to the paucity of penile shaft skin and use of it during surgery, skin scarring and healing issues occur in a minority of patients. While there are no obvious risks factors for the development of skin scarring in patients, there are some reports indicating genetic and environmental factors that may play a role on the pathophysiology of hypospadias and the outcomes of the repair. Others state that certain race and ethnic factors may increase one’s risk and that older children have more hypospadias treatment related complications. Additionally, the type of hypospadias repair and skin coverage technique may play a role in skin scarring. The purpose of this study is to investigate the incidence of skin complications in patients who have had hypospadias surgery.