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J Urol. 1999 Dec;162(6):2014-8.

Prostate histopathology and the chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome: a prospective biopsy study.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, University of Washington Medical Center, Seattle, USA.



The chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome is a common clinical syndrome characterized by lower genitourinary tract symptoms, particularly pain in the perineum or genitalia, voiding symptoms, such as dysuria or frequency, and sexual dysfunction in the absence of uropathogens in the urine or prostatic secretions. The term prostatitis is based on the presumption that prostatic inflammation is important in the pathophysiology of this syndrome. To our knowledge there has been no systematic characterization of the degree and nature of inflammation in the prostate in symptomatic cases.


Prostate histopathology in 368 biopsies from 97 patients with the chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome was characterized..


Prostatic inflammation was detected in only 33% of patients, including 29% with mild (less than 10 leukocytes per 1 mm. field) and 4% with moderate (between 10 and 200) or severe (more than 200) infiltrate. Of the 3 patients with moderate inflammation 1 had glandular, 1 periglandular and 3 multifocal or diffuse distribution of leukocytes in the interstitium. Some patients had more than 1 pattern of inflammation.


The finding of moderate or severe inflammation in only 5% of 97 patients argues for the need to reevaluate current concepts of the pathophysiology of the chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome.

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