Tuesday, August 15

The study raises concerns about commercial men's health clinic services.

It's "buyer beware" when it comes to direct-to-consumer (DTC) men's health clinics because many of them provide pricey treatments that aren't backed by research and don't have the necessary medical oversight, according to a research study that was published online on February 1, 2023, by Urology.

Researchers found 233 DTC men's health clinics. These clinics provided erectile dysfunction treatments such as platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections, penile shock wave therapy, testosterone replacement therapy (TRT), and penile shock wave therapy. The criteria for utilizing TRT, however, are still up for debate, and the majority of clinics did not adhere to established testing and diagnosis procedures for low testosterone levels, according to the study. Penile shock wave therapy and PRP should only be used in clinical trial settings, they warned, as their efficacy is still being investigated.

Additionally, the majority of the clinics lacked an endocrinologist or urologist on staff. As opposed to doctors, nurse practitioners and physician assistants served as their primary healthcare providers. Although these people are capable of offering these therapies, the researchers say it's unclear if they are under the supervision of male-specific doctors.

The DTC clinics likewise assessed large out-of-pocket expenses. TRT was between $80 and $500 per month at the clinics that provided price lists. PRP and shock wave therapy have treatment costs of up to $1,200 and $3,000, respectively. The study's findings support the need for greater state agency and medical association supervision and control of these clinics.

This is as seen in journals
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