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Urol Int. 2006;76(1):11-9.

Risk factors for benign prostatic hyperplasia in South Korean men.

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Department of Preventive Medicine, Ewha Womans University, Yangcheon-Gu, Seoul, South Korea.



Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is the most common prostate disease in middle-aged and elderly men, and leads to severe impairment in later life. Despite the significant effect on public health, the causes of BPH have received little attention. Identifying risk factors for BPH is crucial for understanding the etiology and for determining effective interventions or targeting strategies.


This survey was performed in two steps: (1) a pilot study was first conducted prior to the main study in order to estimate baseline characteristics, and (2) the main study investigated the prevalence and risk factors of BPH using clinical diagnostic tests and a questionnaire. A total of 641 males, aged 50-79 years, participated in this community-based cross-sectional study.


Age was the only significant demographic risk factor of BPH. The presence of chronic bronchitis and a high prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level increased the risk by three- and twofold, respectively. The risk decreased as drinking frequency increased. Physical activity 3-5 times/week reduced the risk relative to being active less than twice per week; however, engaging in physical activity nearly everyday increased the risk 1.7-fold relative to being active up to twice per week.


Although BPH has been considered a disease that is unavoidable with advancing age, the clear identification and control of the underlying risk factors might allow effective prevention by placing a special emphasis on those at risk.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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