Assessment and management of male lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS).
Male lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) are common, causing significant bother and impair quality of life. LUTS are a spectrum of symptoms that may or may not be due to benign prostatic obstruction (BPO). LUTS are divided into storage, voiding or post micturition symptoms, which each need to be considered in terms of impact, mechanism and treatment options. In most patients, a mixture of symptoms is present. In order to have a better insight about which symptoms are affecting quality of life, a thorough evaluation should include medical history, examination, validated symptom questionnaires, bladder diary, and flow rate (with post void residual measurement). Other tests, particularly urodynamic tests may be needed to guide treatment selection, particularly for surgery. Management of male LUTS is tailored according to the underlying mechanisms. Different treatment modalities are available according to individual patient preference. These range from watchful waiting, behavioral and dietary modifications, and/or medications - either as monotherapy or in combination. Surgery to relieve BPO may be needed where patients have significant bothersome voiding LUTS, and are willing to accept risks associated with irreversible treatment. Interventions for storage LUTS are available, but must be selected judiciously, using particular caution if nocturia is prominent. In order to achieve better outcomes, a rational stepwise approach to decision making is needed.
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