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Open Access Open Badges Research article

Pelvic tenderness is not limited to the prostate in chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS) type IIIA and IIIB: comparison of men with and without CP/CPPS

Richard E Berger*, Marcia A Ciol, Ivan Rothman and Judith A Turner

Author Affiliations

Departments of Urology, Rehabilitation Medicine and Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. The University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, USA

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BMC Urology 2007, 7:17  doi:10.1186/1471-2490-7-17

Published: 2 October 2007



We wished to determine if there were differences in pelvic and non-pelvic tenderness between men with chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS) Type III and men without pelvic pain.


We performed the Manual Tender Point Survey (MTPS) as described by the American College of Rheumatology on 62 men with CP/CPPS Type IIIA and IIIB and 98 men without pelvic pain. We also assessed tenderness of 10 external pelvic tender points (EPTP) and of 7 internal pelvic tender points (IPTP). All study participants completed the National Institutes of Health Chronic Prostatitis Symptom Inventory (NIH CPSI).


We found that men with CPPS were significantly more tender in the MTPS, the EPTPS and the IPTPS. CPSI scores correlated with EPTP scale but not with IPTP scale or prostate tenderness. Prostatic tenderness was present in 75% of men with CPPS and in 50% of men without CPPS. Expressed prostatic fluid leukocytosis was not associated with prostatic tenderness.


Men with CP/CPPS have more tenderness compared to men without CPPS. Tenderness in men with CPPS is distributed throughout the pelvis and not specific to the prostate.