Purpose: The International Continence Society (ICS) ICSmale questionnaire was devised to provide a thorough evaluation of the occurrence and bothersomeness of lower urinary tract symptoms and their impact on the lives of men with benign prostatic disease. This report completes the developmental work on the questionnaire, producing the concise short form instrument, ICSmaleSF, with a valid, reliable and scientifically justified scoring system.
Materials and methods: Two data sets were used. The short form version of the questionnaire was devised and initially evaluated using data on men with uncomplicated lower urinary tract symptoms who were involved in the CLasP randomized controlled trial comparing laser therapy with transurethral prostatic resection and conservative management or monitoring without active intervention. External validation of the scoring system was undertaken using data from phase II of the ICS benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) study, an observational study of outcome in men with lower urinary tract symptoms related to benign prostatic enlargement. All patients completed the developmental version of the ICSmale questionnaire. Parallel analysis on the CLasP data set identified items that were responsive to change or highly problematic, allowing other redundant and overlapping items to be eliminated. Factor analysis and Cronbach's alpha coefficients were used to examine the clustering of items. Regression models were used to investigate the validity of followup scores within and across treatment groups in the CLasP and ICS/BPH studies.
Results: The questionnaire, which originally comprised 22 items, was shortened to 11 items in the 2 distinct factors of voiding (ICSmaleVS) and incontinence (ICSmaleIS) symptoms. Cronbach's alpha coefficients were high at 0.76 for ICSmaleVS and 0.78 for ICSmaleIS. A simple additive score was calculated by adding the 5 items in ICSmaleVS and 6 in ICSmaleIS. ICSmaleVS and ICSmaleIS detected expected improvement in the laser therapy and transurethral prostatic resection groups, and stability in the conservative management group within CLasP. Similarly each subscore but particularly ICSmaleVS was sensitive to differences in the outcome of the range of treatments in the ICS/BPH study. While frequency and nocturia were highly problematic and sensitive to change individually, they did not load into the other main factors or correlate with each other. It is suggested that these symptoms should be evaluated separately with the additional inclusion of a single item measure of the impact of lower urinary tract symptoms on daily life.
Conclusions: The ICSmaleSF represents a comprehensive, concise, valid and reliable instrument for evaluating men with lower urinary tract symptoms. Unlike other questionnaires in the field it contains subscores for the domains of voiding and incontinent symptoms as well as the separate consideration of frequency, nocturia and impact on daily life. We hope that it will become the tool of choice for the comprehensive evaluation of treatment of men with lower urinary tract symptoms associated with benign prostatic disease.