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Free app helps prostate patients

Treatment assistance for men with advanced prostate cancer is now available via an iPhone app.

Simply called “adt”, which stands for androgen deprivation therapy, the free app is described as the first of its kind. It provides patients with automated reminders through notifications direct to the phone, thereby providing a treatment management system patients can rely on.

The patient or their clinician can use the app as soon as treatment commences. “More than anything, we aim to ease the tremendous burden that patients are already facing,” said urologist Dr Jim Duthie, who led the project. It was co-ordinated by Australian Prostate Cancer Research (APCR) and supported by software production company Appster.

About 25,000 men in Australia are undergoing hormone therapy for advanced prostate cancer. A number of blood tests and health checks at different times can be difficult for the patients as side-effects of the drugs can be a challenge. “As you can imagine, this is a terribly hard process for patients and their families, so anything that we can do to make information and support more accessible and help them manage will be a great outcome,” said Duthie.

James Garland, APCR chief executive, said the project was a good example of what can be achieved through collaborative research. “Each year around 3000 men die of prostate cancer and the vast majority have drug therapy as part of their treatment. To deliver such a clinically relevant e-health innovation ... really shows that we can achieve great things when we work together.”

"E-health is a major area of research for us to help deliver improved clinical support, in particular for regional and remote communities who face inequity of access."

The easy-to-use app can be accessed worldwide through the Apple App Store by searching for "adt".

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