Its Complicated: Enlarged Prostate And Sex
BPH and sexual function
Prostate enlargement, also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia , and erectile dysfunction are separate problems. Both increase with age, but one causes problems in the bathroom and the other in the bedroom. However, the two are somewhat linked.
BPH happens when your prostate becomes enlarged, but cancer isnt the cause. A mans prostate continues growing throughout most of his adult life. This is why many older men are affected by the condition.
ED is the inability to get or maintain an erection. It can be caused by physical conditions such as:
It can also be caused by psychological issues.
These two conditions dont necessarily seem linked, but certain treatments that relieve BPH can cause ED and other sexual side effects. On the other hand, treating ED can improve enlarged prostate symptoms.
- inability to empty the bladder
- a weak urine stream
A surgery called transurethral resection of the prostate can help relieve these symptoms. Men who have this procedure often experience sexual side effects after surgery.
Between 50 and 75 percent of men experience retrograde ejaculation after TURP, according to Harvard Medical School. This means that semen released during orgasm enters the bladder rather than exiting the penis. Retrograde ejaculation is sometimes called dry orgasm. Its not harmful but can affect male fertility.
Tips For Relieving Bph Symptoms
Four simple steps can help relieve some of the symptoms of BPH:
For more on advances in the diagnosis and treatment of prostate diseases, read the Annual Report on Prostate Diseases from Harvard Medical School.
What Other Problems Might An Enlarged Prostate Cause
A small number of men may find it difficult to empty their bladder properly this is called urine retention. If youve been diagnosed with an enlarged prostate, your doctor will look at your test results to see if youre at risk of urine retention. You may be more likely to get urine retention if:
- youre aged 70 or over
- your prostate is very large
- you have a raised prostate specific antigen level
- you have severe urinary symptoms and a very slow flow.
Chronic urine retention
This is where you cant empty your bladder fully, but can still urinate a little. It usually develops slowly over time. Chronic means long-lasting. The first signs often include a weak flow when you urinate, or leaking urine at night. You may feel that your abdomen is swollen, or that youre not emptying your bladder fully.
Chronic urine retention is usually painless. But the pressure of the urine can slowly stretch your bladder muscle and make it weaker. This can cause urine to be left behind in the bladder when you urinate. If you dont empty your bladder fully, you might get a urine infection, need to urinate more often, leak urine at night, or get painful bladder stones. You might also see some blood in your urine. Chronic urine retention can damage your bladder and kidneys if it isnt treated.
There are treatments for chronic urine retention, including:
- passing a thin, flexible tube called a catheter to drain urine from your bladder
- surgery to widen the urethra.
Acute urine retention
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What Are The Symptoms Of Enlarged Prostate
When the prostate becomes enlarged, it can block the urethra and impair bladder function. Symptoms that may indicate this is happening include:
- Urinating many times a day and being unable to hold off urination
- Problems starting a urine stream or a weak or interrupted stream, followed by dribbling at the end
- Waking at night to urinate and accidental loss of urine
Foods To Avoid: Eggs & Poultry
A study published in the January 2006 issue of Urology explored the connection between diet and BPH symptoms.1 It found that eating eggs and poultry appeared to increase symptoms. This may be to do with the fact that egg yolks have high levels of arachidonic acid, which, as mentioned earlier, increases inflammation.
Now, I’m not suggesting that you must cut eggs and chicken out of your diet completely this is just one study and more research would be needed to make a more thorough conclusion on the issue. However, I would advise you not to focus your diet around these foods and to get more variety instead. Vegetables are an excellent option as they contain and array of nutrients and can be incorporated into meals like curries and soups, as well as snacks.
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It May Be Able To Help Treat Prostatitis
Prostatitis is a common inflammation of the prostate gland, which can be caused by a bacterial infection.
“Symptoms include everything from burning from urination to pain with ejaculation, lousy urine stream, and discomfort in perineum behind the scrotum and in front of the rectum,” says Danny Keiller, MD, who specializes in urology at Genesis Healthcare Partners in San Diego and is an advisor to the non-profit organization the Men’s Health Network .
While the primary course of treatment for prostatitis is antibiotics, Keiller says that some doctors have been using prostate massage as a treatment method with positive results, though there are no scientific studies to support this.
When To Contact A Medical Professional
- Less urine than usual
- Back, side, or abdominal pain
- Blood or pus in your urine
Also call if:
- Your bladder does not feel completely empty after you urinate.
- You take medicines that may cause urinary problems, such as diuretics, antihistamines, antidepressants, or sedatives. DO NOT stop or change your medicines without talking to your provider.
- You have tried self-care steps for 2 months and symptoms have not improved.
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Enlarged Prostate This Treatment Can Help You Avoid Sexual Side Effects
Benign prostatic hyperplasia , or enlarged prostate, is a common condition in men older than age 50. BPH occurs when the prostate gland becomes enlarged and begins to press on the urethra the tube that carries urine out of the body.
When the prostate continues to grow, it can lead to urinary symptoms that include:
- Leaking or dribbling of urine
- Frequent nighttime awakenings to urinate
- Urinary retention or urgency
- A weak urine stream
BPH is not prostate cancer and it doesnt lead to cancer. However, the two conditions may have similar symptoms in the early stages
So its important that men who experience these symptoms be evaluated by a mens health specialist to rule out cancer and determine the best treatment options to relieve their symptoms.
Without treatment, BPH can lead to serious complications in some men, including incontinence, kidney or bladder damage, urinary tract infections and bladder stones. In some extreme cases, BPH can cause a total inability to urinate and require emergency catheterization.
About Half Of Men Older Than 50 Have An Enlarged Prostate Here Are Some Of The Basic Facts You Need To Know About This Common Condition
As men age, many experience prostate gland enlargement. This condition is known as benign prostatic hyperplasia .
The prostate gland surrounds the urethra, the hollow tube that carries urine out of the body. When the prostate gets bigger, it can squeeze or partially block the urethra, which leads to problems urinating.
BPH is quite common in older men. In fact, the condition impacts about 50% of men between the ages of 51 and 60. For men 80 and older, the prevalence of BPH is approximately 90%, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
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Cause Of Urinary Problems As Men Age
Many men experience urinary symptoms as they age, which may be caused by inflammation of the prostate gland . In older men, symptoms may be due to a blockage in the tubes due to a benign enlargement of the prostate gland . The most common symptom is difficulty emptying your bladder. Urinary symptoms may become bothersome enough that they require treatment. Not all urinary symptoms are due to changes to the prostate. Also, some men have enlarged prostates and yet experience few, if any, symptoms.
Risk Factors For Prostate Cancer
Some risk factors have been linked to prostate cancer. A risk factor is something that can raise your chance of developing a disease. Having one or more risk factors doesn’t mean that you will get prostate cancer. It just means that your risk of the disease is greater.
- Age. Men who are 50 or older have a higher risk of prostate cancer.
- Race. African-American men have the highest risk of prostate cancerâthe disease tends to start at younger ages and grows faster than in men of other races. After African-American men, prostate cancer is most common among white men, followed by Hispanic and Native American men. Asian-American men have the lowest rates of prostate cancer.
- Family history. Men whose fathers or brothers have had prostate cancer have a 2 to 3 times higher risk of prostate cancer than men who do not have a family history of the disease. A man who has 3 immediate family members with prostate cancer has about 10 times the risk of a man who does not have a family history of prostate cancer. The younger a man’s relatives are when they have prostate cancer, the greater his risk for developing the disease. Prostate cancer risk also appears to be slightly higher for men from families with a history of breast cancer.
- Diet. The risk of prostate cancer may be higher for men who eat high-fat diets.
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What Did The Research Involve
In 1994, the researchers recruited 27,607 men from the existing cohort study in the US. The men did not have prostate or other forms of cancer . They had also had a prostate specific antigen test .
In this study:
- Information on the mens eating habits was collected every four years.
- Information regarding prostate cancer diagnosis was collected every two years.
- From men who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer, information of treatment and disease progression was collected every two years.
- The researchers defined lethal prostate cancer as disease that had spread to distant organs or death due to prostate cancer during the studys follow-up period .
The researchers followed up the cohort for 14 years and analysed the associations between eating different amounts of red meat, poultry and eggs and the risk of developing lethal prostate cancer. The researchers grouped each participant according to the average amounts of each type of food they ate per week. For red meat, the subgroups included :
- less than three servings
For poultry, the subgroups were defined as :
- less than 1.5 servings
- over 3.5 servings for week
For eggs, the subgroups were:
- less than half an egg
- 0.5 to 1.5 eggs
- 1.5 to 2.5 eggs
- over 2.5 eggs
To determine which subgroup each participant would be allocated to, the researchers averaged their responses from all of the dietary questionnaires the participants had completed up until their diagnosis, or until the end of the study .
How Might An Enlarged Prostate Affect My Life
Having an enlarged prostate affects men in different ways. Some men can manage mild symptoms and dont need treatment. Other men find they need to stay near a toilet. This can make it difficult to work, drive, be outdoors and attend social events. If you need the toilet a lot during the night, this can affect your sleep and make you feel more tired during the day.
Some men with an enlarged prostate find their symptoms improve over time without treatment. But for most, the symptoms will stay the same or slowly start to cause more problems over time unless they have treatment.
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Does An Enlarged Prostate Affect A Man Sexually
The quick and easy answer is that an enlarged prostate can definitely impact men and their sexual health. If that’s all you were looking for, you can go on with your day, but the ways in which an enlarged prostate can affect a man’s sexual health is quite interesting and worth a read.
The prostate is a uniquely male structure in the human body that works in a unique way. Because the urethra is dual purpose and is the common pathway for semen and urine, the prostate acts as the traffic controller, ensuring that both are routed correctly and do not occur simultaneously. Additionally, the prostate is a crucial component in the creation of seminal fluid.
To fully answer the question as to how an enlarged prostate can impact a man sexually, it is important to compare the different dimensions surrounding sexual health and how an enlarged prostate affects these components of sexual functioning. Below is a deeper look into an enlarged prostate and its effect on male sexual health.
Tips For Coping With An Enlarged Prostate
When a man reaches about age 25, his prostate begins to grow. This natural growth is called benign prostatic hyperplasia and it is the most common cause of prostate enlargement. BPH is a benign condition that does not lead to prostate cancer, though the two problems can coexist.
Although 50% to 60% of men with BPH may never develop any symptoms, others find that BPH can make life miserable. The symptoms of BPH include:
- a hesitant, interrupted, weak urine stream
- urgency, leaking, or dribbling
- a sense of incomplete emptying
- more frequent urination, especially at night.
As a result, many men seek treatment. The good news is that treatments are constantly being improved. Patients and their physicians now have more medications to choose from, so if one doesn’t do the trick, another can be prescribed. And thanks to some refinements, surgical treatments are more effective and have fewer side effects than ever before.
But there are some things men dealing with BPH can do on their own. When symptoms are not particularly bothersome, watchful waiting may be the best way to proceed. This involves regular monitoring to make sure complications aren’t developing, but no treatment. For more troubling symptoms, most doctors begin by recommending a combination of lifestyle changes and medication. Often this will be enough to relieve the worst symptoms and prevent the need for surgery
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Treating An Enlarged Prostate
If you find yourself with any of these symptoms, Dr. Cornell performs a thorough evaluation to determine whether BPH has developed and where.
Based upon this information, he recommends a treatment plan that could include:
- Medications to improve urinary flow and shrink your prostate
- Prostiva® RF Therapy to open the passageways
- PlasmaButton vaporization to remove prostate tissue
If youre struggling with any of the symptoms we describe above, we urge you to contact our office in Houston, Texas, as soon as possible. Through early intervention, we can restore your quality of life by restoring your urinary function.
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Is An Enlarged Prostate A Serious Medical Condition
Frequent urination, feeling you always have to go, weak stream, dribbling, and waking up in the middle of the night are all symptoms of an enlarged prostate. Benign prostatic hyperplasia , or enlarged prostate, is more common than most men realize. And without treatment, it could lead to a more permanent condition. Urologist Dr. Stephen Summers talks about what BPH symptoms to look out for and why treatment is so important.
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What Are The Possible Complications
Urinary symptoms do not worsen in everyone. Serious complications are unlikely to occur in most men with an enlarged prostate. Complications that sometimes occur include:
- In some cases, a total blockage of urine occurs so you will no longer be able to pass urine. This is called urinary retention. It can be very uncomfortable and you will need to have a small tube inserted to drain the bladder. It occurs in less than 1 in 100 men with an enlarged prostate each year. See the separate leaflet called Urinary Retention.
- In some cases, only some of the urine in the bladder is emptied when you pass urine. Some urine remains in the bladder at all times. This ongoing condition is called chronic retention. This may cause repeated urine infections, or incontinence .
Note: the risk of prostate cancer is not increased. Men with a benign prostate enlargement are no more or less likely to develop prostate cancer than those without benign prostate enlargement.
Side Effects And Nutrition
Cancer treatment often causes side effects, such as nausea, mouth sores, and taste changes that may make it difficult to eat or drink. Follow these tips to help you get the nutrition you need:
- If water tastes unpleasant to you, take in more liquid though items such as soup, tea, milk or milk substitutes such as almond milk, or a sports drink. Or, flavor your water by adding fresh cut fruit.
- If food tastes bland, try seasoning it with flavorful spices such as garlic, cayenne, dill, and rosemary.
- Eat several small meals throughout the day instead of trying to eat large amounts of food at one time.
- Enhance your protein intake with protein from foods such as fish, egg whites, cheese, beans, or high protein smoothies.
- Suck on mints, chew on gum, or try fresh citrus fruits if you have a metallic taste in your mouth. Brushing your teeth before eating, using plastic utensils, and cooking in glassware can also help.
- If you have mouth sores or a gum infection, use a blender to make vegetables and meats smooth. Try juicing or making smoothies.Some side effects are often treated with medication, so talk with your doctor or another member of your health care team for more information.