Do UTIs raise the risk for prostate cancer?

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  • Lower urinary tract infection (LUTI) is associated with an increased risk for prostate cancer, especially in patients with repeated medical visits for LUTI.

Why this matters

  • Inflammation of the prostate caused by cystitis and urethritis may play a role in the etiology of prostate cancer.

Key results

  • Compared with the group without LUTI, risk of developing prostate cancer was significantly higher in both the cystitis cohort (adjusted HR=1.46) and urethritis cohort (adjusted HR=1.72).
  • Further analyses found that there was a significantly greater risk of developing prostate cancer in patients with >5 medical visits per year for cystitis (aHR=9.25) and urethritis (aHR=9.68) vs the non-LUTI cohort.

Study design

  • A retrospective nationwide population-based cohort study of 14,273 men newly diagnosed with LUTI (cystitis, n=9347 and urethritis, n=4926) from 1998 to 2011 in the Taiwan Longitudinal Health Insurance Database.
  • Each LUTI patient was randomly frequency-matched with 4 men without LUTI.
  • Funding: Various public sources, including Taiwan Ministry of Health and Welfare Clinical Trial and Research Center of Excellence.


  • No detailed information on potential confounding factors, LUTI pathogens, or stage/grade of prostate cancer.