Benign prostate enlargement (BPE) is a common condition in men over the age of 50. It is not a cancer and usually does not pose a serious health threat. BPE can cause a range of symptoms, from mild and barely noticeable to severe, and can lead to complications such as urinary tract infections or acute urinary retention. Treatment for BPE often depends on the severity of the symptoms and may include lifestyle changes, medications, or surgery.
The prostate is part of the male reproductive system and its function is to add fluid to sperm before ejaculation. As men age, the prostate grows and can begin to pinch or tighten the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body. This can make it difficult for men with an enlarged prostate to urinate. The first symptom of an enlarged prostate is usually difficulty urinating.
Instead of having a strong, even flow, urine just drips like a faucet that drips; it drips, drips, drips. Because you don't empty your bladder completely every time, you still feel the need to go to the bathroom, even in the middle of the night. To examine the prostate, the doctor or urologist will check the prostate by inserting a gloved, lubricated finger and feeling for any growths. Other tests can check the flow of urine and the amount of urine left in the bladder after surgery, as well as check for signs of an infection or prostate cancer. If you don't have any symptoms, your doctor may suggest that you just observe them, which is called watchful waiting.
If you have bothersome symptoms, medications can reduce the size of your prostate and relax your bladder and prostate so that you don't constantly feel the need to go to the bathroom. For more severe symptoms, surgery can remove excess prostate tissue. To help ease the symptoms of an enlarged prostate, control the amount of fluid you drink, especially before bed or before going out. Minimizes alcohol and caffeine, as well as over-the-counter decongestants and antihistamines. They can make your symptoms worse.
Once you've emptied your bladder, wait a while and try to do it again without straining or pushing. Some people take herbs such as saw palmetto for prostate enlargement. While there is some evidence that these herbs can alleviate BPH symptoms, many studies have found no benefit. Talk to your doctor before taking any herbal remedies, as they can cause side effects. No, having an enlarged prostate does not increase the risk of prostate cancer. The two problems usually start in different parts of the prostate.
However, men can have an enlarged prostate and prostate cancer at the same time. In addition to lifestyle changes, medications are generally recommended to treat moderate to severe symptoms of benign prostate enlargement. The implants are then placed to keep the enlarged prostate away from the urethra so that it doesn't get blocked. Open prostatectomy is a procedure that may be more effective than TURP if you have severe benign prostate enlargement. In the later stages, benign prostate enlargement can lead to urine retention and other complications such as bladder stones, bladder infections, and kidney damage. Surgery is generally only recommended for moderate to severe symptoms of benign prostate enlargement that don't respond to medication. Your family doctor will also want to rule out other conditions that cause symptoms similar to those of an enlarged prostate.
There's also some research that suggests that you may have a higher risk of developing an enlarged prostate if your father or brother has one.