Purpose: Treatment for benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), including minimally invasive therapy, can impair the quality of life. We prospectively determined the impact of 4 different interventional therapies on quality of life and sexual function. Materials and Methods: A total of 173 patients were prospectively evaluated between February 1995 and August 1997. Treatment modalities consisted of standard transurethral resection of the prostate in 55 cases, transurethral microwave thermotherapy in 34, interstitial laser coagulation of the prostate in 42 and transurethral needle ablation in 42. Disease specific quality of life was assessed using the International Prostate Symptom Score quality of life assessment index and BPH impact index. In addition, a self-reporting questionnaire was completed before and 3 months after treatment to determine the impact on sexual function. Results: All 4 treatment groups showed significant improvement in the symptom score, International Prostate Symptom Score quality of life assessment score and BPH impact index score. Satisfaction with treatment was highest in patients treated with transurethral resection or laser coagulation. A mild to moderate decrease in erectile function was noted in 26.5%, 18.2%, 18.4% and 20.0% of the transurethral resection, microwave thermotherapy, laser coagulation and needle ablation groups, respectively, but there was no significant difference of mean pretreatment and posttreatment erectile function or libido scores in any group. Ejaculation loss or severe decrease in ejaculate volume was reported by 48.6%, 28.1%, 21.6% and 24.3% of the patients, respectively. Interestingly, 20 of the 44 patients (45.5%) with loss of ejaculation or severe decrease in ejaculate reported deterioration of the sex life, while only 2 (3.6%) of the 56 without any change in ejaculate volume reported such deterioration. The association of ejaculatory dysfunction with an adverse impact on sexual activity was highly significant (p <0.0001). Conclusions: Significant improvement in quality of life could be achieved with the present assessed interventional therapies. There was no significant change in sexual desire or erectile function with these therapies. Posttreatment sexual dysfunction appears to be mainly related to impaired ejaculatory function. Urologists should provide proper counseling regarding the possibility of this complication even in patients receiving minimally invasive treatment.
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