Serum concentrations of sex hormones in men with severe lower urinary tract symptoms and benign prostatic hyperplasia.Int Urol Nephrol. 2003; 35(3):357-63.IU
To find out the impact of age-related changes in serum concentrations of sex hormones on the development of severe lower urinary tract symptoms and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).
PATIENTS AND METHODS
The study group consisted of 61 consecutive patients subjected to prostatectomy for BPH between 2000-2001 in our clinic. Forty-five randomly assigned, age and socioeconomically matched cases without any lower urinary tract symptoms were taken as the control group. Both clinical BPH and control groups were divided to 3 age groups (namely 50-59, 60-69 and > or = 70 years) and age-related changes in serum concentrations of sex hormones were investigated.
Prostate adenoma weight was found to be increased significantly (p = 0.02) with advancing age in clinical BPH group. There was no difference between serum concentrations of measured sex hormones between small and large prostates except for serum estradiol levels, which were found to be significantly higher in patients who had an adenoma weight of > 50 g (p = 0.047). Similar results were obtained in both clinical BPH and control groups with respect to age-related changes in serum concentrations of sex hormones. Briefly there was an age-related decrease in serum free testosterone levels and increase in serum estradiol, prolactin and gonadotropin levels. Serum free testosterone concentration was significantly higher in the control group for ages 60-69 (p = 0.015) while total testosterone was higher in BPH patients for patients older than 70 years of age (p = 0.027). No other significant change was documented between 2 groups. An age-dependent increase in serum E/freeT ratio was documented in both clinical BPH and control patients whereas serum freeT/T ratio was decreased in the BPH group with advancing age (p = 0.008).
The decrease in serum free testosterone concentrations with a relative rise in serum estradiol levels with advancing age might be an important factor in the development of BPH. However it is likely that serum concentrations of sex hormones play little impact on the clinical severity of BPH.