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Keywords:

  • Chronic Pelvic Pain;
  • Sex;
  • Urination;
  • Men

ABSTRACT

Introduction.  Recent international prevalence studies of pelvic pain in men have estimates ranging between 2% and 10%. These studies conclude that it is an important international health problem.

Aims.  The aims of this study were to establish the first population-based study of pelvic pain in Australian men, and identify correlates with men's sexual and reproductive histories and other health conditions.

Methods.  A representative household sample of 4,290 Australian men aged 16–64 years completed a computer-assisted telephone interview. They were asked about their experiences of pain in the pelvic region during the past 12 months.

Main Outcome Measures.  Prevalence of correlates of pain associated with sexual intercourse, pain associated with urination, and pelvic pain not associated with intercourse or urination.

Results.  Five percent of men reported pain during urination, 5% reported pain related to sexual intercourse, and 12% of men reported other chronic pelvic pain. There was little overlap in reporting any of the three types of pelvic pain, with 18% of men reporting some form of pelvic pain. Men reporting any of the pain conditions were significantly more likely than other men to report a sexual experience when they had felt forced or frightened. Men reporting pain during intercourse and/or chronic pelvic pain were significantly more likely than other men to report same sex experience. All three groups of men with pelvic pain were more likely than other men to report some form of sexual difficulties. A report of ever receiving a diagnosis of depression or a report of anxiety was significantly associated with all forms of pelvic pain.

Conclusions.  More than one man in six report having some form of pelvic pain in the past 12 months. It is likely that men would benefit from a discussion about possible symptoms during consultations with their physicians. Pitts M, Ferris J, Smith A, Shelley J, and Richters J. Prevalence and correlates of three types of pelvic pain in a nationally representative sample of Australian men. J Sex Med 2008;5:1223–1229.