BackgroundFew studies have reported on late declines and long-term health-related quality of life (HRQOL) after prostate cancer (PCa) treatment.
ObjectiveWe assessed long-term HRQOL following various treatments for localized PCa.
Design, setting, and participantsThis cohort study of HRQOL up to 10 yr after treatment used a prospectively accrued, nationwide PCa registry that collects longitudinal patient-reported HRQOL.
InterventionVarious primary treatments for localized PCa.
Outcome measurements and statistical analysisThe Medical Outcomes Studies 36-item Short Form and the University of California, Los Angeles, Prostate Cancer Index characterized physical function, mental health, and sexual, urinary, and bowel function and bother. Repeated measures mixed-model analysis assessed change in HRQOL by treatment over time, and logistic regression was used to measure the likelihood of a clinically significant decline in HRQOL.
Results and limitationsAmong 3294 men, 1139 (34%) underwent nerve-sparing radical prostatectomy (NSRP), 860 (26%) underwent non-NSRP, 684 (21%) underwent brachytherapy, 386 (12%) underwent external beam radiotherapy, 161 (5%) underwent primary androgen deprivation therapy, and 64 (2%) pursued watchful waiting/active surveillance. Median follow-up was 74 mo (interquartile range: 50-102). Most treatments resulted in early declines in HRQOL, with some recovery over the next 1-2 yr and a plateau in scores thereafter. Surgery had the largest impact on sexual function and bother and on urinary function, radiation had the strongest effect on bowel function, and androgen deprivation therapy had the strongest effect on physical function. The main limitation was attrition among the cohort.
ConclusionsAlthough most men experience initial declines in HRQOL in the first 2 yr after treatment, there is little change from 3 to 10 yr and most differences between treatments attenuated over time.
Patient summaryVarious treatments for prostate cancer result in a distinct constellation of adverse effects on health-related quality of life, which may have a long-term impact. These findings are helpful regarding shared decision making over choice of primary treatment.