OBJECTIVES: To determine which factors predict seeking of primary care among men with lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS).
METHODS: A longitudinal, population-based study with a follow-up period of 6.5 yr was conducted among 1688 men aged 50-78 yr. The following data were collected: prostate volume (using transrectal ultrasonometry), urinary flow rate, ultrasound-estimated postvoid residual urine volume, generic and disease-specific quality of life (QOL), and symptom severity (International Prostate Symptom Score [IPSS]). Information on the seeking of primary care by all participants during 2 yr of follow-up was collected from the general practitioner's (GP) record using a computerised search engine and a manual check of electronically selected files.
RESULTS: Prostate volume, postvoid residual volume, IPSS, and social generic QOL are important determinants of first GP consultation in men with LUTS. Measurements (physical urologic parameters) and self-reported items (symptom severity and QOL) contribute almost equally to GP consultation in these men.
CONCLUSIONS: Both measurements of prostate volume and postvoid residual urine volume and self-reported information about symptoms or QOL can help to select those who will benefit from medical care and to reassure those men not likely to need help in the near future.
- Longitudinal Studies
- Middle Aged
- Patient Acceptance of Health Care
- Primary Health Care