Genitourinary functioning and depressive symptoms over time in younger versus older men treated for prostate cancer.

BACKGROUND/PURPOSE: This study examined the relation of age to genitourinary functioning and depressive symptoms over time and examined how age influences the relation between genitourinary functioning and depressive symptoms over time in men treated for localized prostate cancer.

METHODS: Participants were 234 men who completed interviews that assessed genitourinary functioning and depressive symptoms at 2, 4, 10 and 16 months after treatment. Analyses were statistically controlled for potential confounds.

RESULTS: Compared with younger men (≤ 65.5), older men had significantly poorer sexual function and slower improvement. Level of urinary functioning was inversely associated with level of depressive symptoms regardless of age. Level of sexual functioning was inversely associated with level of depressive symptoms but only in younger men.

CONCLUSION: Interventions may be particularly helpful for all men with urinary dysfunction and for younger men with sexual dysfunction in order to improve symptoms of depression.