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As they age, men run the very common risk of having an enlarged prostate, also known as Benign Prostate Hyperplasia or BPH. While most men will experience some sort of prostate issue during his life, the good news is that an enlarged prostate does not always indicate a more serious condition such as cancer. However, an enlarged prostate does bring with it its own set of inconveniences and problems. If you are experiencing any of the following signs, changes are you may have an enlarged prostate and should seek treatment as soon as you can before matters become worse.

Nocturia: midnight bathroom runs.

It starts innocently enough, with a few midnight trips to the bathroom. But over time, the trips become more frequent, making long car rides or meetings at work difficult to bear without removing oneself to void.

Difficulty urinating.

When the prostate gland, which surrounds the urethra, enlarges, it can shut off the ability to urinate, making urination difficult and sometimes painful. Urinary hesitancy occurs when the stream starts slowly until it becomes consistent. At times, there is a sensation of wanting to urinate, but with moot results. Weak flow is also a symptom of an enlarged prostate.

Frequent urinary tract infections.

When the bladder doesn’t fully void, there runs a risk of developing chronic urinary tract infections. While more common in women, UTIs are do occur in men with enlarged prostate; that’s because bacteria can build up over time if it is not carried away through urination. Any sort of burning sensation, chills, or cloudy urine may be signs of a urinary tract infection and, thus, an enlarged prostate.

Blood in Urine

An enlarged prostate may also present as blood in the urine; this may mean that there are other complications involved, such as an infection or possibly cancer.

Treatment

Treating BPH depends on the extent of one’s symptoms, the size of the prostate, the age of the patient and the amount of discomfort caused by the prostate’s enlargement. After confirming your condition with a series of tests, your urologist may choose a more conservative measure of treatment, such as medication; or surgical treatment if your symptoms are more advanced

Your Urologist in Milford

If you have any of the above symptoms of an enlarged prostate or are experiencing any other urological concerns, contact the Urology Specialists of Milford by calling (508) 473-6333, or request an appointment online. Don’t suffer in silence, an enlarged prostate is extremely common and fairly simple to treat, as long as you are willing to get checked. Trust your prostate health to the best – call us today.

July 12, 2019
Category: General
Tags: bph   Enlarged Prostates  

As men age, the risk of developing an enlarged prostate increases significantly. It is estimated that, by the age of 60, nearly half of all men will experience an enlarged prostate, otherwise known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). An estimated 90 percent of men will have it by the age of 80.

When the prostate becomes enlarged, it can block the flow of urine from the bladder, leading to frequent urges to urinate along with difficulty urinating.  

Although this condition can be frustrating and disruptive, an enlarged prostate is not cancerous or immediately threatening to your health. However, the worse the condition gets, the more pressure the prostate puts on your urethra, blocking semen and urine from exiting your body.

If you are diagnosed with BPH, your doctor might advise you to try at least one of the following remedies.

Medication

Alpha blockers and 5-alpha reductase (5-AR) inhibitors are two different medications used to treat an enlarged prostate.

Alpha blockers do this by relaxing the muscles around your bladder and prostate, making it easier for urine to flow. These work fairly quickly and symptoms may improve within a few days of starting the medication, although it can take up to six weeks to notice the full effect.

The 5-alpha reductase inhibitors, on the other hand, can take a few months to work. It treats your condition by lowering the levels of DHT (dihydrotestosterone), the hormone believed to cause an enlarged prostate, essentially shrinking your prostate in the process.  

Antibiotics may be used to treat inflammation of the prostate (prostatitis) which sometimes occurs with BPH. Over-the-counter supplements, such as saw palmetto, may help relieve BPH symptoms.

Heat Therapy

If your blockage is mild to moderate, your doctor might prescribe a type of heat therapy that can help alleviate symptoms such as weak urine flow and frequent urination.

Transurethral microwave thermotherapy (TUMT) is a minimally invasive outpatient procedure performed under anesthesia that involves inserting an instrument into the urethra and up into the prostate. The device transmits microwave energy that heats and kills some of the tissue lining the inside of the prostate, shrinking the organ and allow urine to pass more easily.   

It is considered to be more effective than medication.

Stents

If medication or surgery are not viable options due to other medical conditions, your doctor may recommend inserting a prostatic stent to expand the urethra opening, allowing urine to flow more easily.

During this outpatient procedure and while under anesthesia, a tiny coil (the stent) is inserted into your urethra and positioned in the area narrowed by the enlarged prostate. Once the stent is in place, it expands like a spring to help keep the walls of the urethra open.

Surgery

As a last resort, your doctor may recommend surgery to relieve the pressure on your urethra from an enlarged prostate.

There are several options available, which either shrink the size of the prostate – such as a transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP), laser surgery, or open prostatectomy – or widen the urethra, such as a transurethral incision of the prostate (TUIP).

While surgery is the most invasive treatment, it is generally believed to be the most successful at relieving symptoms of BPH.

For more information about your options in dealing with an enlarged prostate call Urology Specialists of Milford at (508) 473-6333. You can also request an appointment with Dr. Jeffrey Steinberg using our convenient online form.