Warning over bladder cancer test

MARTA STEEMAN
Last updated 07:48 11/07/2014

Relevant offers

Health

Pukekohe solo dad Kent Allan looking to extend his life with treatment in Melbourne Christchurch man says more help needed for suicidal people 430 bungy jumps in 24 hours: Kiwi Mike Heard sets new world record Mother sentenced for hiding anti-psychotic drugs in daughter's yoghurt Waikato Hospital capacity crisis could happen again Typhoid case spreads from Auckland to Palmerston North Dr Lance O'Sullivan joins us to discuss the anti-vaccination movement Cancer treatment comes slowest to those in Hawke's Bay and Whanganui Napier's drinking water being chlorinated following positive test MotherFunk: Mums get fit with their bubs at funky dance class

Two Christchurch urologists have words of caution about the marketing of a urine test for detection of bladder cancer direct to patients.

This week Dunedin biotech Pacific Edge said it would launch an online booking system where people with blood in their urine could order a test without needing a referral from GPs or other specialists.

Pacific Edge has been developing its Cxbladder test for a decade and bought the technology from Otago University.

It says the direct sales to consumers will give them some control over their health and that this is part of the evolution to "personal medicine".

Urologists Stephen Mark and Peter Davidson say consumers should be cautious.

They say haematuria (blood in the urine) has a number of causes, of which bladder cancer is only one.

"Cxbladder may help with the detection of bladder cancer, but does not rule out the other causes of haematuria and therefore does not take away the need for standard testing."

And that was implied in Pacific Edge's press release, the urologists say. The release said: "There are many New Zealanders who are aware that there is a technology available that can complement or provide an alternative to the standard invasive tests".

Mark and Davidson say Cxbladder has not been tested in a community setting, nor has the concept of direct to patient marketing of the Cxbladder test been widely discussed with urologists, the specialists who look after the investigation of haematuria and treatment of bladder cancer.

They are concerned patients may think the Cxbladder test is all that is required.

"As such the urological community are concerned that patients who are not fully informed about the implications of haematuria and Cxbladder testing may take false reassurance from this test.

"Even in the event of a normal Cxbladder test, patients are encouraged to still see their general practitioners if they have blood in the urine, to both discuss the implications of the haematuria and to ensure appropriate investigation," Mark and Davidson say.

Ad Feedback

- The Press

Special offers
Opinion poll

Should fluoride in water be the responsibility of central government?

Yes

No

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content