Enlarged Prostate Gland Or Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (bph) Causes, Symptoms And Treatments - Online Article
Benign prostatic hyperplasia is commonly known as an enlarged prostate gland. The prostate glad is about the size and shape of a walnut. Located just below the bladder, it surrounds the urethra, which carries urine out of the bladder. The prostate produces semen, the fluid that carries sperm.
The prostate gland continues to grow all through a man's life. This rarely causes evils until later in life. The layer of tissue around the prostate keeps it from growing outward. As a result, the prostate gland begins to press on the urethra like a clamp. It is a noncancerous situation.
What is benign prostatic hyperplasia?
Benign prostatic hyperplasia is nonmalignant (noncancerous) enlargement of the prostate gland, a common occurrence in older men. It is also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia and abbreviated as BPH.
Symptoms of an Enlarged Prostate
Benign prostate hyperplasia causes the prostate gland to squeeze the urethra that it surrounds. In time, this blocks the flow of urine and causes a number of symptoms, including:
- Not being able to empty the bladder completely
- Needing to go to the bathroom more often. There may be a sense of urgency connected to this. The need to go to the bathroom may wake you during the night.
- Hesitation in starting to urinate and a weak urine stream once it begins
- Because the bladder isn't completely emptied, other conditions can happen such as kidney stones, bladder infections, prostate infections or not being able to urinate at all.
Causes and Risk Factors for an Enlarged Prostate
It is not well understood what causes benign prostatic hyperplasia. Almost half of all men older than 60 are estimated to have some symptoms of an enlarged prostate. There may be some involvement of hormones, which change as a man ages, as well.
How is Enlarged Prostate Treated?
Benign prostatic hyperplasiaTreatment is not always required for prostate gland enlargement. The doctor should discuss with the patient the benefits and likely side effects of any treatments used. If symptoms are mild, often only observation or 'watchful waiting' is required with regular checkups. The advantage of this approach is that the men will not need to suffer the adverse effects of prostate surgery or prostate treatment unless their condition progresses and symptoms of enlarged prostate need treatment.
Treatments for benign prostatic hyperplasia include medical and surgical options.
Medical treatment is typically reserved for men who have significant symptoms. The available drugs include:
- Terazosin belongs to a class of medications which relax the smooth muscles of the arteries, the prostate, and the bladder neck. This helps relieve urinary obstruction caused by an enlarged prostate in BPH. Side effects can include headaches. Also, these medicines sometimes make people feel dizzy, lightheaded, or tired. Alpha blockers are new drugs, so doctors do not know their long-term effects.
- Finasteride is a drug that inhibits the action of the male hormone testosterone and helps to shrink the prostate. Side effects of finasteride include declining interest in sex, problems getting an erection, and problems with ejaculation. Because it is a new drug, doctors are not sure about its long-term effects.
Surgery is the treatment most likely to relieve BPH symptoms. However, it also has the most complications. Doctors use two kinds of surgery for BPH:
- Transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) is the most common. The patient is put to sleep under general anaesthetic and the prostate gland is 'shelled out' from inside the bladder. This should relieve the obstructive symptoms in BPH. However, TURPs can only be used if the prostate is not too enlarged.
- Open surgery is used when the prostate is much enlarged. In open surgery, the surgeon makes an incision in the abdomen or between the scrotum and the anus to remove prostate tissue. (a radical prostatectomy).
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