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A Journal on Nephrology and Urology

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Minerva Urologica e Nefrologica 2004 June;56(2):99-107

language: English

Classification, epidemiology and implications of chronic prostatitis in North America, Europe and Asia

Krieger J. N.

Depart­ment of Urol­o­gy Uni­ver­sity of Wash­ing­ton School of Med­i­cine, Seat­tle, WA, USA


The ­last ­decade has ­seen a resur­gence of inter­est and excit­ing new ­research on chron­ic pros­tat­its and relat­ed syn­dromes. One impor­tant rea­son for ­this enthu­siasm is the rec­og­ni­tion ­that chron­ic pros­ta­titis syn­dromes rep­re­sent an impor­tant world­wide ­health ­care prob­lem. New ­data sug­gest­ing ­that chron­ic pros­ta­titis syn­dromes may ­have impor­tant ­long-­term con­se­quenc­es are a second rea­son for the resur­gence of ­research inter­est. ­This arti­cle ­reviews the new clas­sifi­ca­tion of chron­ic pros­tat­its syn­dromes. Empha­sis is ­then giv­en to sum­mar­iz­ing new ­data on the epi­dem­i­ol­o­gy of chron­ic pros­ta­titis. We con­cen­trat­ed on pop­u­la­tion-­based stud­ies employ­ing rea­son­able ­case-def­i­ni­tions to sur­vey var­i­ous pop­u­la­tions ­from ­North Amer­i­ca, ­Europe and ­Asia. ­These stud­ies sug­gest ­that pros­ta­titis syn­dromes are com­mon, ­with 2-10% of ­adult men suf­fer­ing ­from symp­toms com­pat­ible ­with chron­ic pros­ta­titis at any ­time. Approx­i­mate­ly 15% of men suf­fer ­from symp­toms of pros­ta­titis at ­some ­point in ­their ­lives. Pre­lim­i­nary epi­dem­i­olog­i­cal and bio­log­i­cal stud­ies ­also sug­gest ­that chron­ic pros­ta­titis may be asso­ciat­ed ­with an ­increased ­risk for devel­op­ment of ­benign pros­tat­ic hyper­pla­sia and pros­tate can­cer. ­These find­ings sup­port the con­clu­sions ­that chron­ic pros­ta­titis is an impor­tant inter­na­tion­al ­health ­care prob­lem ­that mer­its ­increased pri­or­ity ­from cli­ni­cians as ­well as ­increased clin­i­cal and ­basic sci­ence ­research.

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