Background: While the optimal use and timing of secondary therapy after radical prostatectomy (RP) remain controversial, there are limited data on patient-reported outcomes following multimodal therapy.
Objective: To assess the impact of additional radiation therapy (RT) and/or androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) on urinary continence, potency, and quality of life (QoL) after RP.
Design, setting, and participants: Among 13150 men who underwent RP from 1992 to 2013, 905 received RP + RT, 407 RP + ADT and 688 RP + RT + ADT.
Outcome measurements and statistical analyses: Urinary function, sexual function, and overall QoL were evaluated annually using self-administered validated questionnaires. Propensity score-matched and bootstrap analyses were performed, and the distributions for all functional outcomes were analyzed as a function of time after RP.
Results and limitations: Patients who received RP + RT had a 4% higher overall incontinence rate 3 yr after surgery, and 1% higher rate for severe incontinence (>3 pads/24h) compared to matched RP-only patients. ADT further increased the overall and severe incontinence rates by 4% and 3%, respectively, compared to matched RP + RT patients. RP + RT was associated with an 18% lower rate of potency compared to RP alone, while RP + RT + ADT was associated with a further 17% reduction compared to RP + RT. Additional RT reduced QoL by 10% and additional ADT by a further 12% compared to RP only and RP + RT, respectively. The timing of RT after RP had no influence on continence, but adjuvant compared to salvage RT was associated with significantly lower potency (37% vs 45%), but higher QoL (60% vs 56%). Limitations of our study include the observational study design and potential for selection bias in the treatments received.
Conclusions: Secondary RT and ADT after RP have an additive negative influence on urinary function, potency, and QoL. Patients with high-risk disease should be counseled before RP on the potential net impairment of functional outcomes due to multimodal treatment.
Patient summary: Men with high-risk disease choosing surgery upfront should be counseled on the potential need for additional radiation and or androgen deprivation, and the potential net impairment of functional outcomes arising from multimodal treatment.
Keywords: Androgen deprivation; Functional outcome; Hormone therapy; Multimodal treatment; Potency; Quality of life; Radiation; Radical prostatectomy; Sexual function; Urinary continence.
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