The prostate is a muscular & tiny gland in the male reproductive system. Your prostate encompasses your urethra and makes most of the liquid in your semen. The muscular ability of the prostate pushes the liquid and semen through your penis during sexual climax. In men, the prostate can get enlarged. In some cases, it prompts symptoms and, after some time, health complications. But there are treatments for this condition.
What is BPH?
An enlargement of the prostate is called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). It happens when the cells of the prostate organ start to multiply. These extra cells cause your prostate gland to expand, which crushes the urethra and limits the flow of urine. Unlike prostate cancer, BPH is different and presents no increased risk of cancer. Although, it can cause side effects that can affect your quality of life. It is commonly found in men older than 50 years.
Symptoms of Benign Prostate Enlargement
The seriousness of symptoms in individuals who have prostate enlargement varies, however, these symptoms generally get worse over a period of time. Normal signs and symptoms of BPH include:
- Urgent or frequent need to urinate
- Constant urge to urinate at night
- Trouble in urination
- Weak urine stream or a stream that stops and starts
- Dribbling at the end of urination
- Inability to empty the bladder
Other complicated signs include:
- Urinary tract disease
- Inability to urinate
- Blood in the urine
The size of your prostate doesn’t really decide the seriousness of your symptoms. In some cases, men with barely enlarged prostates can have significant symptoms, while other men with very enlarged prostates can have just minor urinary symptoms.
BPH is a normal condition as men age, and numerous men older than 80 years have BPH symptoms. Although the reason is unknown, changes in male sex hormones that accompany aging might be a factor. Any family history of prostate problems or rarities with your testicles may raise your risk of BPH. Men who’ve had their testicles removed at a young age are not affected by BPH.
Your primary care physician will begin by examining your conditions by asking about your symptoms and doing a physical test. This initial test is probably going to include:
- Digital rectal exam
- Urine test
- Blood test
- Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test
Post these tests, your doctor may prescribe extra tests to help confirm an enlarged prostate and to rule out other conditions. These tests include:
- Urinary flow test
- Postvoid residual volume test
- 24-hour voiding diary
If the patient’s condition is complex, the doctors may recommend –
- Transrectal ultrasound
- Prostate biopsy
Treatment of Prostate Enlargement
Treatment of BPH can start with self-care. If symptoms still persist after self-care, drug or medical procedure might be prescribed. Your age and general wellbeing will likewise impact the recommended treatment.
The natural treatment can be done by specific actions or lifestyle changes. These include:
- Urinating when you feel the inclination
- Heading off to the washroom to urinate even when you don’t feel the urge
- Keeping away from over-the-counter decongestants or antihistamine meds, which can make it harder for the bladder to empty
- Keeping away from liquor and caffeine, particularly in the hours after dinner
- Reducing anxiety levels, as nervousness can build the frequency of urination
- Exercising consistently, as an absence of exercise can aggravate your symptoms
- Learning and practising Kegel exercise to strengthen your pelvic muscles
- Keeping warm, since being cold can worsen the symptoms
At the point when lifestyle changes aren’t sufficient to relieve symptoms, your doctor may prescribe medicine. There are a few drugs that can help to both treat the symptoms of BPH and BPH itself. These drugs include alpha-1 blockers, hormone reduction meds, and antibiotics.
There are various kinds of surgeries that can help treat BPH when meds are not effective. A few procedures are either not invasive or minimally invasive which can be done at your physician’s office or facility (OPD procedures). Others are more invasive and should be done in a hospital (IPD procedures).
Following are the OPD procedures –
- Transurethral needle ablation (TUNA)
- Transurethral microwave therapy (TUMT)
- Water-induced thermotherapy (WIT)
- High-intensity focused ultrasonography (HIFU)
When you have the following symptoms, IPD procedures will be recommended –
- Kidney failure
- Bladder stones
- Complete inability to empty the bladder
- Recurring episodes of blood in urine
The in-patient procedures for prostate enlargement are Transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP), Simple prostatectomy and Transurethral incision of the prostate (TUIP).
Once in a while, your doctor will need you to have routine checkups to screen your symptoms and the size of your prostate. Changes in lifestyle, medication, and surgery are all treatment alternatives for symptoms that are affecting your quality of life. Your surgeon will work with you to build up a treatment plan that helps you deal with your symptoms and carry on with a healthy life. That’s why it’s critical to talk about your symptoms of BPH with your doctor, regardless of how minor you feel they might be.