Never-Married Men Fare Worse After Prostate Cancer Surgery

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SAN FRANCISCO—Prostate cancer patients who have never been married are more likely than married men to die from their disease following radical prostatectomy (RP), according to study findings presented here at the annual Genitourinary Cancers Symposium.

Kenneth Gerard Nepple, MD, and colleagues at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis studied 3,596 men who underwent RP and had a median 72 months of follow-up. Of these, 86.9% were married, 5.3% were divorced, 2.4% were widowed, and 5.5% never married. Married men had the lowest mean PSA at diagnosis and never-married men were younger and the most likely to have no known medical comorbidity. A total of 386 (11%) men had died at the end of follow up, only 55 from PCa.

Compared with married men, men who never married had a 3.6-fold increased risk of dying from their cancer and a 1.8-fold increased risk of death from any cause.

“Factors associated with social isolation or unhealthy behaviors may have a detrimental effect on survival after prostatectomy,” the authors concluded.

The symposium is co-sponsored by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the American Society of Radiation Oncology, and the Society of Urologic Oncology.

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