A video-based educational tool may improve patient comprehension of common terminology used to describe prostate health, according to research published online in Cancer.

Daniel S. Wang, M.D., of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues asked 56 patients with a mean literacy level of seventh to eighth grade to view a video-based educational tool explaining terms related to urinary, bowel, and sexual function. Levels of comprehension were assessed before and after the intervention.

The researchers observed statistically significant improvements in comprehension for most of the terms after the intervention, including the terms incontinence (from 14 to 50 percent), bowels (from 14 to 46 percent), and impotence (from 58 to 84 percent).

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Other significant improvements in comprehension were understanding of the function of the prostate (from 11 to 30 percent) and the ability to locate the prostate on anatomic drawings (from 50 to 82 percent).

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“This video-based educational tool is an effective method for overcoming the severe lack of comprehension of prostate health terminology among patients,” the authors write.

“The improvements achieved have the potential to enhance patient participation in shared and informed decision making and to support combined visual-audio multimedia as a promising tool for prostate cancer education.”


  1. Wang, Daniel S., MD, et al. “Video-based educational tool improves patient comprehension of common prostate health terminology.” Cancer. DOI: 10.1002/cncr.29101. November 12, 2014.