Who Should I See If I Have A Prostate Problem
You should first see your regular doctor for this problem. Your doctor may refer you to a special doctor called a urologist for further evaluation and treatment. Urologists have additional training in treating problems of the urinary tract. Prostate gland problems are the most common disorders treated by urologists.
If you would like more information, please contact us.
How Is Prostatitis Diagnosed
Your healthcare provider will review your past health and sexual history. He or she will also do a physical exam. Other tests may include:
- Urine culture. This test collects prostatic fluid and urine. They are checked for white blood cells and bacteria.
- Digital rectal exam . In this test, the healthcare provider puts a gloved finger into the rectum to check the part of the prostate next to the rectum. This is done to look for swelling or tenderness.
- Prostate massage. The healthcare provider massages your prostate gland to drain fluid into the urethra. This fluid is then checked under a microscope to look for inflammation or infection. This test is usually done during a digital rectal exam .
- Semen culture. A semen sample is tested in the lab for bacteria and white blood cells.
- Cystoscopy. A thin, flexible tube and viewing device is put into the penis and through the urethra. Your healthcare provider uses the device to look at your bladder and urinary tract for structure changes or blockages.
- Transrectal ultrasound. A thin transducer is inserted into the rectum next to the prostate to show images of the prostate.
- CT scan. This is an imaging test that uses X-rays and a computer to make detailed images of the body. A CT scan shows details of the bones, muscles, fat, and organs.
More Information About Prostatitis
The following is an English-language resource that may be useful. Please note that THE MANUAL is not responsible for the content of this resource.
Prostatitis Foundation: This organization provides access to relevant publications , patient testimonials, a list of providers who treat prostatitis in the United States and the United Kingdom, and access to third-party prostatitis-based web sites in French, Swedish, and Italian.
Don’t Miss: Cialis For Bph Dosage
Medications For Enlarged Prostate
There are two main classes of pharmaceuticals that work to alleviate enlarged prostate symptoms: alpha blockers and alpha reductase inhibitors
Alpha Blockers. Alpha blockers relax the smooth muscle around the bladder neck and within the urethra.
Inhibitors. Inhibitors stop the conversion of the male hormone testosterone to DHT to reduce the prostate’s size, eliminating blockage.
Dont be surprised if your physician prescribes a combination of the two medications, as they have been shown to work more effectively together than alone. The downside is that combination therapy may increase the likelihood of experiencing side effects from the medications. Be sure to work with your doctor to assess the benefits and costs before starting on combination therapy.
Does Surgery On The Prostate Gland Interfere With Sexual Function
Surgery for an enlarged prostate does not usually interfere with a man’s sexual functioning. However, about 10 to 15 percent of men may have trouble getting erections after surgery. Men may have a problem called retrograde ejaculation, which causes semen to go backward into the bladder instead of through the urethra to the outside. This means no longer being able to father children but causes no other harm.
Don’t Miss: Is Cranberry Juice Good For Prostate
The Relationship Between Constipation And The Prostate Is Kind Of Like The Old Chicken And Egg Conundrum
The egg: Constipation, aka the build-up of feces in the intestine , can put pressure on the bladder and the prostate, which can cause symptoms resembling those associated with an enlarged prostate. The chicken: an enlarged prostate can put pressure on the rectum and cause constipation. But wait, theres more
What Should I Do If I Think I May Have Prostate Problems
Regardless of which problem you may think you have, you should see your primary care doctor. To make the diagnosis your doctor will take a complete history, physical exam that includes a digital rectal exam, and other appropriate diagnostic tests, for example, a urinalysis, urine culture, blood tests such as the PSA test, electrolytes, creatinine, and occasionally blood urea nitrogen levels. Your doctor may order other tests, for example, an ultrasound, endoscopy, urine flow rate studies, and biopsy of the prostate gland. Your doctor also may refer you to a specialist called a urologist, especially if you require surgery as part of your treatment.
Recommended Reading: Do Females Have Prostate Cancer
Minimally Invasive Treatments For An Enlarged Prostate
When medications don’t help your enlarged prostate, several procedures can relieve symptoms — without surgery. They are performed in a doctor’s office. “These procedures use various types of heat energy to shrink a portion of the prostate,” explains Westney. “They are very effective.”
TUMT : This therapy for mild to moderate blockage reduces urinary frequency, urgency, straining, and intermittent flow — but does not correct any bladder-emptying problems. In this procedure, computer-regulated microwaves are used to heat portions within the prostate to destroy select tissue. A cooling system protects the wall of the urethra during the procedure. TUMT is performed in a doctor’s office and requires only topical anesthesia and pain medications.
Possible side effects include painful urination for several weeks. Temporary urgency and frequency of urination is also possible. There may be less semen ejaculated. Many men must have this procedure repeated, either because symptoms return or do not improve.
TUNA : This procedure also destroys prostate tissue to improve urine flow and relieve symptoms. It involves heating the tissue with high-frequency radiowaves transmitted by needles inserted directly into the prostate . The procedure does not require a hospital stay. Possible side effects include painful, urgent, or frequent urination for a few weeks.
Bowel And Bladder Problems
Treatments for prostate cancer such as surgery, external radiotherapy and brachytherapy may cause damage or inflammation to organs near the prostate such as the bowels and the bladder. Men we interviewed described episodes of bleeding from the back passage, diarrhoea, constipation and damage to the bowel after radiotherapy.
You May Like: Does Prostatitis Go Away Without Treatment
The Most Common Prostate Problem Among Men Over Age 50 This Condition Can Cause Embarrassing Urination Issues
While BPH does not increase your risk of getting prostate cancer or having sexual problems, it can affect quality of life, specifically by causing annoying and embarrassing urination problems.
“Since prostate enlargement happens gradually, men often think more frequent trips to the bathroom are a natural part of aging,” says Dr. Howard LeWine, chief medical editor at Harvard Health Publishing and an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital. “But a little medication can help relieve symptoms, meaning less urinary urgency and fewer nighttime awakenings to use the bathroom.”
Problems With Enlarged Prostate Gland
Benign enlargement of the prostate gland is more common as men get older. It can cause troublesome symptoms, although it doesnt always.
The urethra passes through the prostate gland, so men may have problems urinating if the enlarged gland restricts the flow of urine. If the flow stops completely, a catheter is required to empty the bladder. It is rare for this form of acute urinary retention to cause kidney damage.
An enlarged prostate doesn’t always cause urinary problems. Studies indicate that the size of a man’s prostate gland has little influence on the type or severity of his urination problems. BPH is just one possible cause of urinary symptoms.
Another cause of urinary symptoms can be changes to the muscular wall of the bladder, which may cause spasms of the bladder or weaken the bladder, causing problems passing urine.
Don’t Miss: Beta Sitosterol Erectile Dysfunction
Treatment For Benign Prostate Hyperplasia
Treatment for benign prostate hyperplasia can involve:
- Lifestyle changes, such as limiting a night-time consumption of liquids, avoiding caffeine and alcohol, avoiding medication such as diuretics, decongestants and antihistamines and getting more exercise, as well as dietary improvements, such as eating more fibre, avoiding artificial sweeteners and sweetened beverages.
- Medication, such as alpha-blockers or 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors.
- Interventions, such as the UroliftÂ® system, a non-surgical proprietary device that uses tiny implants to lift the prostate away from the urethra and thereby relieve BPH symptoms that result from pressure on the urethra.
- Surgical procedures, such as a prostatectomy , transurethral microwave thermotherapy , prostate laser, and Transurethral Resection of the Prostate .
- Herbal prostate treatments, such as saw palmetto extract. Saw palmetto extract is made from the fruit of the saw palmetto, which is native to the southeast and Gulf coasts of North America and may potentially assist in reducing urinary frequency and increasing urinary flow.
Treatment of prostate cancer can involve:
What Treatments Are Used For An Enlarged Prostate
A number of treatments are available for an enlarged prostate that is causing urine problems.
- Medicine: Two types of medicines are now in use to treat prostate enlargement. A medicine that is normally used for high blood pressure helps to relax the muscle tissue in the prostate, relieving part of the blockage. The second type of medicine used shrinks the enlarged prostate by blocking the effect on the prostate of the male hormone, testosterone. These medicines are helpful to some of the men who have enlarged prostates.
- Surgery: This is currently the most widely accepted method of treating enlarged prostate when symptoms are severe. Basically, the operation removes some of the enlarged tissue to relieve the symptoms. More limited types of surgery are also done, which just make cuts in the prostate instead of removing tissue.
- Newer treatments: High levels of electric current can be used to destroy enlarged prostate tissue. Thermal therapy uses microwave or radiofrequency energy to reduce the gland’s size. Herbal extracts such as saw palmetto have been reported to help reduce symptoms in some cases. These new treatments are still being evaluated by doctors, and the long-term risks and benefits are not yet known. Your doctor will advise you about what treatment is best for you.
Recommended Reading: What Is Perineural Invasion In Prostate Cancer
Bladder And Urinary Troubles
A prostate tumor that has grown significantly in size may start to press on your bladder and urethra. The urethra is the passage the carries urine from your bladder out of your body. If the tumor is pressing on your urethra, you might have trouble passing urine.
One of the common areas for prostate cancer to spread to is the bladder, because the two organs are close. This can cause additional problems with urination and bladder function.
Some symptoms your bladder and urethra are being affected by cancer include:
- urinating more frequently
- getting up in the middle of the night to pee
- having blood in your urine or semen
- feeling like you have to urinate often and not actually passing anything
Its not as common, but prostate cancer can also spread to your bowel. The cancer first spreads to the rectum, which is the part of your bowel closest to the prostate gland.
Symptoms of cancer thats spread to the bowels include:
- stomach pain
How Do Doctors Check For Enlarged Prostate
DiagnosisDigital rectal exam. The doctor inserts a finger into the rectum to check your prostate for enlargement.Urine test. Analyzing a sample of your urine can help rule out an infection or other conditions that can cause similar symptoms.Blood test. Prostate-specific antigen blood test.Apr 13, 2021
You May Like: Chemo Treatment For Prostate Cancer
Preparation For The Operation
Any surgical procedure of this magnitude is done in a hospital. Unless there are some extraordinary circumstances, you will probably be admitted on the day of surgery. You may need blood tests, an electrocardiogram , and other tests done prior to your surgical date. It is very important that you refrain from eating or drinking anything for at least eight hours prior to your scheduled operation time. In most circumstances this means nothing should pass your lips after midnight before your surgical procedure. Patients taking medicine for their heart or blood pressure, generally should continue these medications on their routine schedule with just a small sip of water. Be certain to review the medicines your are taking with your doctor and ask your him about which medicines to continue and discontinue.
Sexual Function After Surgery
Many men worry about whether surgery for BPH will affect their ability to enjoy sex. Some sources state that sexual function is rarely affected, while others claim that it can cause problems in up to 30 percent of cases. However, most doctors say that even though it takes awhile for sexual function to return fully, with time, most men are able to enjoy sex again.
Complete recovery of sexual function may take up to 1 year, lagging behind a persons general recovery. The exact length of time depends on how long after symptoms appeared that BPH surgery was done and on the type of surgery. Following is a summary of how surgery is likely to affect the following aspects of sexual function.
Don’t Miss: Does Enlarged Prostate Affect Ejaculation
The Top 7 Signs Of Advanced Prostate Cancer
In the early stages, you may not notice any symptoms related to prostate cancer. This is why screenings are important. Symptoms can sometimes be noticed for the first time when the cancer advances.
Advanced prostate cancer, also called metastatic cancer, means the cancer has spread to other areas of your body beyond your prostate gland. The most common areas for prostate cancer to spread are your bladder, rectum, and bones. It can also spread to your lymph nodes, liver, lungs, and other body tissues.
Whether youve just been diagnosed or youre in treatment, its also important to know the signs of advanced cancer. Cancer can behave differently depending on your genetics, so not every person will experience the same symptoms in the same way.
Read on to learn more about the seven top symptoms of advanced prostate cancer and how to spot them.
Whats The Connection Between Your Bowel And Bph
You are sitting on the toilet… the clock is ticking the seconds away… you are waiting… still waiting… and for once it is not your bladder that is refusing to divulge its contents, but your bowel.
Constipation and prostate problems may seem like two unrelated conditions but, in fact, they are more connected than they may initially seem.
To understand this connection better, this blog will look at the following points:
- What is constipation?
- What’s the link between the prostate and constipation?
- How do you ease constipation?
Don’t Miss: Transitional Zone Prostate
Signs And Symptoms Of Prostate Cancer
Most prostate cancers are found early, through screening. Early prostate cancer usually causes no symptoms. More advanced prostate cancers can sometimes cause symptoms, such as:
- Problems urinating, including a slow or weak urinary stream or the need to urinate more often, especially at night
- Blood in the urine or semen
- Trouble getting an erection
- Pain in the hips, back , chest , or other areas from cancer that has spread to bones
- Weakness or numbness in the legs or feet, or even loss of bladder or bowel control from cancer pressing on the spinal cord
Most of these problems are more likely to be caused by something other than prostate cancer. For example, trouble urinating is much more often caused by benign prostatic hyperplasia , a non-cancerous growth of the prostate. Still, its important to tell your health care provider if you have any of these symptoms so that the cause can be found and treated, if needed. Some men might need more tests to check for prostate cancer.
Diagnosis Of An Enlarged Prostate
In order to establish the possible underlying causes for an enlarged prostate, doctors will perform a variety of tests.
Tests which are commonly used to find the cause of an enlarged prostate include:
- A digital rectal exam. A physician or nurse will insert a gloved finger into the patientâs rectum to digitally examine the prostate for swelling and/or enlargement.
- Swab tests for urethral discharge or urine. To determine underlying conditions such as STIs/STDs and urinary tract infections. A swab of discharge or urine is taken and sent to a medical laboratory for culturing, so that any microorganisms are identified.
- Urinalysis. A urine sample is sent to a medical laboratory for analysis and may be tested for urea nitrogen or creatinine, among other things.
- Blood tests. A sample of blood is sent to a medical laboratory for analysis, which may include tests for creatinine or blood urea nitrogen, as well as antibodies and infectious agents.
- Prostate-specific antigen test. A blood sample is sent to a medical laboratory to be tested for prostate-specific antigen , an enzyme produced by cells in the prostate. A change in PSA levels can indicate that there is a problem with the prostate.
If patients are referred to a urologist, they may have further tests, including:
Before referring the patient for tests, the physician may also ask questions in order to determine the possible causes of the discomfort, their severity, and their duration. Such questions may cover:
Also Check: What Is Perineural Invasion In Prostate Cancer
Can Prostatitis And Bph Be Cured
The prognosis for BPH for most patients that undergo treatment is good to fair, depending upon how well patients respond. BPH that requires surgery may result in complications such as erectile dysfunction. The prognosis for patients with more severe BPH symptoms that require surgery and medication for symptom relief is fair. There is no cure for BPH.
Most men with prostatitis may have significant symptom relief, and most men can be cured with long-term appropriate antibiotic treatments. The prognosis for prostatitis ranges from good to fair because some patients have a tendency to have recurrent bouts of the condition.