The Economic Impact of Chronic Prostatitis

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Abstract

Background

Little information exists on the economic impact of chronic prostatitis. The objective of this study was to determine the direct and indirect costs associated with chronic prostatitis.

Methods

Outcomes were assessed using a questionnaire designed to capture health care resource utilization. Resource estimates were converted into unit costs with direct medical cost estimates based on hospital cost-accounting data and indirect costs based on modified labor force, employment, and earnings data from the US Census Bureau.

Results

The total direct costs for the 3 months prior to entry into the cohort, excluding hospitalization, were $126 915 for the 167 study participants for an average of $954 per person among the 133 consumers. Of the men, 26% reported work loss valued at an average of $551. The average total costs (direct and indirect) for the 3 months was $1099 per person for those 137 men who had resource consumption with an expected annual total cost per person of $4397. For those study participants with any incurred costs, tests for association revealed that the National Institutes of Health Chronic Prostatitis Symptom Index (P<.001) and each of the 3 subcategories of pain (P = .003), urinary function (P = .03), and quality-of-life (P = .002) were significantly associated with resource use, although the quality-of-life subscale score from the National Institutes of Health Chronic Prostatitis Symptom Index was the only predictor of resource consumption.

Conclusions

Chronic prostatitis is associated with substantial costs and lower quality-of-life scores, which predicted resource consumption. The economic impact of chronic prostatitis warrants increased medical attention and resources to identify and test effective treatment strategies.

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