More reasons to discourage digital rectal exams

Study finds very low evidence for use in primary care

Results from a large meta-analysis support the RACGP’s view that routine digital rectal examination (DRE) for prostate cancer screening should be avoided.

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The research notes a distinct lack of evidence supporting its use in a primary care setting.

The analysis of seven studies included more than 9000 men who underwent both DRE and biopsy. 

The research, conducted by a team from Canada’s McMaster University, shows a high risk of bias, with the overall quality of evidence rated as "very low".

Given the findings, the authors recommend against