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South Med J. 2003 Jan;96(1):9-11.

Balanitis xerotica obliterans: epidemiologic distribution in an equal access health care system.

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Department of Urology, Brooke Army Medical Center, Fort Sam Houston, TX 78234-6200, USA.



We analyzed the incidence of balanitis xerotica obliterans (BXO) by both age and ethnicity at an equal-access health care facility.


We retrospectively reviewed discharge records from 1997 to 1999 at Brooke Army Medical Center to determine ethnicity and age of patients with BXO.


Of 153,432 male patients, 108 (0.070%) had a diagnosis of BXO. The age distribution was similar over a range from 2 to 90 years, with the exception of the third decade, when the incidence almost doubled. Black and Hispanic patients had twice the incidence found in white patients (10.59, 10.67 and 5.07 per 10,000 patients, respectively).


At our equal-access health care facility, the incidence of BXO in black and Hispanic patients was double that in whites. This unexpected finding, in concert with the greater incidence in the third decade, may result from greater access to medical attention for these patients in the military setting. Nevertheless, further research into the origin of the disease is warranted.

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