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Acta Oncol. 2014 Jun;53(6):744-51. doi: 10.3109/0284186X.2013.844357. Epub 2013 Nov 6.

Return to work and sick leave after radical prostatectomy: a prospective clinical study.

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  • 1National Resource Center for Late Effects after Cancer, Oslo University Hospital, The Norwegian Radium Hospital , Oslo , Norway.



To evaluate work status at three months after radical prostatectomy (RP) in patients with prostate cancer (PCa) in relation to socio-demographics, urinary incontinence and bother, medical complications health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and surgical methods. To identify pre-RP available factors that can predict the duration of immediate post-RP sick leave.


This prospective questionnaire-based study included 264 men with PCa<65 years, who were active in the work force before RP. Urinary incontinence and bother were assessed using the Expanded Prostate Cancer Index Composite-50 (EPIC-50). HRQOL was measured using SF-12. Medical complications comprised self- reported new morbidities and re-hospitalizations within three months after RP. Patients' work status was defined as either "stable/improved" or "declined" at three months compared to work status at baseline. Duration of immediate post-RP sick leave was considered as prolonged when lasting >6 weeks. Associations were analyzed using logistic regression analyses.


Almost 30% of the patients had declined work status three months after RP. Change of physical HRQOL was the only factor remaining significantly associated with declined work status in the multivariate analysis. Half of the patients had prolonged immediate sick leave. Having physically strenuous work was the strongest predictor for this outcome.


Long periods of sick leave and reduced workforce participation after RP should be considered potential adverse effects of this treatment.

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