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Archivos Españoles de Urología (Ed. impresa)

Print version ISSN 0004-0614


ORSOLA, Anna  and  MOROTE, Juan. Epidemiology of urinary incontinence in prostate cancer: Incidence, quality of life and farmacoeconomic features. Arch. Esp. Urol. [online]. 2009, vol.62, n.10, pp.786-792. ISSN 0004-0614.

Objectives: To present recent data on the epidemiology of urinary incontinence in prostate cancer (PCa). To review the incidence of urinary incontinence, its impact on quality of life and related pharmacoeconomic features. Methods: We performed a bibliographic review about the complications of the various therapeutic options for PCa including radical prostatectomy (RP) (open, laparoscopic and robotic), external beam radiotherapy, brachytherapy, cryotherapy, and high intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU). Results: The lack of uniformity for urinary incontinence definition, for its evaluation, and for the way to report it makes the interpretation of functional results and impact on quality of life after any treatment option difficult and uneven. Generally, we documented that urinary incontinence after treatment appears more often in patients undergoing radical surgery. Nevertheless, we stated that neurovascular bundle preservation, performance of the procedure in high volume centers, by high volume surgeons, and development of robotic surgery may positively influence the global outcomes of this technique. Moderate incontinence is less frequent after external beam radiotherapy, but the association of rectal pain and diarrhea, in up to 40% of the patients, worsens voiding symptoms. Irritative and obstructive voiding symptoms after perineal brachytherapy are especially associated with long term erectile dysfunction as well as rectal morbidity. In the case of cryotherapy and HIFU the available studies are case series and there are not randomized studies comparing them with the primary treatment of localized PCa. Conclusions: Each treatment modality for PCa is associated with a different pattern of changes in the urinary, sexual, intestinal and hormonal related quality of life domains. Two key factors when evaluating incontinence are information about continence before the procedure and the use of validated, self-administered evaluation means. Although technical improvements in all procedures should contribute to diminish the impact of complications, we should not forget the trend to the association of therapies- multimodal therapy- has a higher complication profile. Therefore, they should be reserved for patients in whom a benefit has been proved.

Keywords : Prostate cancer; Urinary incontinence; Epidemiology; Economics.

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