Climacturia after definitive treatment of prostate cancer

J Urol. 2014 Jan;191(1):159-63. doi: 10.1016/j.juro.2013.06.122. Epub 2013 Sep 16.


Purpose: Prostate cancer treatment results in several sexually related side effects beyond the well studied erectile dysfunction. Climacturia (leakage of urine during orgasm) has been reported after prostatectomy but studies have been limited by multiple factors. In this study we examine the prevalence, causes and impact on orgasm function of climacturia after definitive treatment of prostate cancer with surgery or radiation.

Materials and methods: A total of 906 anonymous surveys were sent to patients with prostate cancer treated with surgery and/or radiation. Respondents were asked about the presence of urinary leakage, climacturia and various elements related to sexual and orgasmic function. We estimated the prevalence of climacturia, evaluated the differences between those with and without climacturia, and assessed the impact of climacturia on orgasmic function.

Results: Overall 412 surveys were returned and available for analysis, and of these respondents 75.2% were sexually active or experiencing orgasms. Climacturia was reported by 22.6% of these respondents, and by 28.3%, 5.2% and 28.6% of those treated with surgery, radiation, or both, respectively (p <0.001). The use of aides to obtain an erection (OR 2.24, 95% CI 1.08-4.93, p = 0.035) and the presence of urinary incontinence (OR 3.09, 95% CI 1.66-5.88, p <0.001) were also associated with climacturia in a multivariate logistic regression model. Climacturia had no significant impact on orgasmic function and satisfaction.

Conclusions: Climacturia is experienced by a substantial proportion of men after undergoing definitive treatment of prostate cancer. We found a complex relationship between stress urinary incontinence and climacturia, and noted that the presence of climacturia does not necessarily negatively impact sexual satisfaction.

Keywords: orgasm; prostatectomy; prostatic neoplasms; radiotherapy; urination disorders.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Orgasm
  • Prostatectomy / adverse effects
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / radiotherapy
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / surgery
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Radiotherapy / adverse effects
  • Sexual Dysfunction, Physiological / etiology*
  • Urinary Incontinence / etiology*