AUA 2011 - Effect of radical prostatectomy on penile shortening - Session Highlights

WASHINGTON, DC USA ( - A Swedish group reported that radical prostatectomy (RP) for prostate cancer results in patient self-assessed penile shortening.


Previously, the postoperative effect on penile length after RP has been controversial, they said. They analyzed self-assessed penile shortening after a RP. A total of 1,411 men that underwent a RP at Karolinska University Hospital between 2002 and 2006 were analyzed for self-assessed penile shortening. The study also included 442 age-matched population-based controls. Penile shortening based on the question; “Is your penis shorter compared to when you were 30 years old?” with response options no or yes.

Among 1,288 (91% participation rate) who underwent RP, 663 patients reported penile shortening (55%), as compared with 85 (26%) of 350 (79% participation rate) men in the control group, corresponding to a relative risk of 2.1 (95% CI 1.8-2.6) of penile shortening compared to the age matched control group. Age, grade of erectile dysfunction and angina were correlated with penile shortening in both groups. Hormonal treatment, heart failure, and BMI correlated with penile shortening after RP. After adjustments for all potential confounders, a relative risk of 1.8 (95% CI 1.4-2.1) for penile shortening compared to the controls was calculated. Extensive nerve-sparing RP was associated with less penile shortening compared with RP with minimal or non-nerve-sparing. They concluded that the correlation between erectile dysfunction after a RP and self-assessed penile shortening suggests a common pathophysiological mechanism via autonomic nerves.


Presented by Stefan Carlsson, et al. at the American Urological Association (AUA) Annual Meeting - May 14 - 19, 2011 - Walter E. Washington Convention Center, Washington, DC USA

Reported for UroToday by Christopher P. Evans, MD, FACS, Professor and Chairman, Department of Urology, University of California, Davis, School of Medicine.


The opinions expressed in this article are those of the Contributing Editor and do not necessarily reflect the viewpoints of the American Urological Association.



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