OBJECTIVE: To assess suitability of visual analog scale (VAS) in the evaluation of functional outcomes after 3D laparoscopic prostatectomy (3D LRP) METHODS: Two hundred men underwent 3D LRP for localised prostate cancer at Seinäjoki Central Hospital in Finland between December 2013 and September 2018. In October 2019, an EPIC-26 survey along with VAS scales enquiring urinary (VAS-incontinence) and sexual (VAS-sexual) symptoms was mailed to the patients, and the correlations between these 2 methods were evaluated. In the EPIC-26 survey, scores for incontinence-(EPIC-26 UI) and sexual (EPIC-26-sexual) domains were calculated using the University of Michigan scoring system. In the VAS questionnaires, patient put a mark on the 10 cm long horizontal line in place, which described his experience of continence and potency. The Spearman rank correlation coefficient was used to evaluate the correlation between methods.
RESULTS: The median scores were as follows: EPIC-26-UI, 79.25 (14.5-100); EPIC-26-sexual, 36.17 (0.0-100); VAS-incontinence, 8.8 cm (1.4-10.0); and VAS-sexual, 3.2 cm (0.0-10). The correlation coefficient between EPIC-26 UI and VAS-incontinence was 0.722 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.63-0.79; p <.0001) and 0.883 (95% CI, 0.84-0.91; p <.0001) between EPIC-26-sexual and VAS-sexual.
CONCLUSION: Our study shows a strong correlation between VAS and EPIC-26 urinary incontinence and sexual domains. In daily clinical practice VAS-scale may serve as a simple tool to evaluate the key functional outcomes of radical prostatectomy.
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