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Survey confirms prostate problems overlooked by men and doctors

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64% of men believe symptoms are an inevitable part of ageing and don't seek help1

First findings from an online survey of more than 1,000 European men aged 50 and over suggest that men avoid discussing bothersome urinary symptoms, which can significantly affect their quality of life1 and are often associated with benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH),2 a prevalent medical condition.

The BPH survey: a male perspective surveyed 1,161 men in Germany, France, Italy, Spain and the UK and found that:1

  • While men would actively see a doctor about concerns relating to hypertension (73%), heart disease (69%) and diabetes (60%), respondents were reluctant to seek medical advice for their urinary symptoms – 46% said that they had never discussed their bothersome urinary symptoms with a doctor
  • For men who had not consulted a doctor about their symptoms, the number one reason for not seeking advice was identified to be a belief that bothersome urinary symptoms are an inevitable part of ageing (reported by 64% of respondents)
  • 40% of men who had not sought medical advice said that they would “accept their urinary symptoms” rather than speak to their doctor
  • Only 14% of men who had not sought medical advice thought that their doctor could significantly improve their symptoms
  • Nearly a third (32%) of men reported that waking up at night with a frequent need to urinate (nocturia) significantly impacted their quality of life and nocturia was the most bothersome urinary symptom reported by men
  • Men typically wait almost two years (23 months) before seeking medical advice about their urinary symptoms

The full press release is available via the hyperlink above.


  1. The BPH survey: a male perspective. Market research undertaken by Kantar Healthcare, an independent market research company that specialises in medical and pharmaceutical studies, on behalf of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK); Summer 2011; 1,161 men over 50 years of age across France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom completed an online survey as part of the Health and Wellness Survey. Data on file.
  2. Banks I, Mayor S, Meryn S. Talking prostates. Journal of Men's Health. 2010; 7: 221-226.

Date of preparation: September 2011, Job bag code: URCE/BPH/0022c/11

*Video:prof. emberton

Watch Professor Mark Emberton, Professor in Interventional Oncology, University College London and Associate Professor, Middlesex University, London outline the reasons for commissioning the survey and what he hopes it will achieve


View key statistics from the European survey

*Video:prof meryn

Watch Professor Siegfried Meryn, General Secretary of the International Society of Men's Health (ISMH), discuss why he believes the survey provides a unique insight about men and their health

*Video:prof meryn

Watch Professor Meryn explain the following about BPH:

Where is the prostate located in the body?
What is BPH?
How does BPH affect male urination?
What happens if BPH is left untreated?
What is the impact of BPH?

GSK media contact:
Martha Bousek
T: +43 (0)1 97075-501

Michelle Cammack
T: +34 606 288 532

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is committed to supporting research to help educate and increase understanding of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), a common prostate disorder. As part of this commitment GSK has developed and funded this project – “The BPH survey: a male perspective” through the creation of a steering group of healthcare professionals – urologists and GPs – to advise on the content of the survey, as well as the implementation of the project across the largest European markets (UK, France, Italy, Germany and Spain). GSK has supported and paid the International Society of Men’s Health (ISMH) for the opportunity to launch the results of this project in the press contact section of their website during their annual Men’s Health World Congress, taking place in Vienna in 2011. All rights relating to the project and the data published are property of GSK.