Enlargement of Prostate: A Benign and Harmless Problem

by | Sep 4, 2014 | Health, Mens Health | 0 comments

As men age, they become more prone to various health risks and deadly diseases. One of the most common problems these days is prostate gland enlargement, which is a common condition among older men. This condition is also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). It is a fact that by age 60, 50% of men develop signs of BPH and by age 85, 90% of men have definite signs of this condition. Basically, severe prostate gland enlargement condition can block the flow of urine out of the bladder and can cause bladder, urinary tract or kidney problems.

Symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH):

Prostate enlargement varies from person to person, but this is a common problem affecting older men. It has been studied that the prostate gland is responsible for synthesising fluid that acts as a transporting medium for sperm during ejaculation, larger size, etc. Basically, the abnormal enlargement of prostate can interfere with the normal process of urination and cause the following symptoms:

Enlargement of Prostate

  • Urgency of urination is one of the early signs of suffering from an enlarged prostate
  • Another sign of enlargement of prostate gland is the reduction in flow and force of urine flow. Various researches conducted on various men states that normal or peak flow of urine among young men is considered as 20 ml/second or higher, whereas it may reduce to 15-20 ml/sec with mild enlargement. But, people suffering with severe enlargement condition, the speed of urine flow worsens to 10 ml/second or below
  • Reduced flow of urine means extra involvement of the bladder muscles which will have to work harder to push the urine through the tube. This means that the bladder cannot function properly and some amount of urine may be left out in the bladder, which keeps dribbling at the end of urination
  • Incontinence is another cause of BPH, which means leaking of urine before you head to the toilet
  • Men with enlarged prostate may have to visit the restrooms various times at night to empty their bladder due to their urge to urinate. Urgency to urinate is caused due to various factors like changes in the functions of kidney, irritation of urethra, and presence of residual urine in the bladder
  • Another symptom is painful urination, which is also due to the enlargement of prostate glands. This condition happens because the load increases on the bladder muscles, which cause irritation where the urethra actually originates or where it passes through the prostate gland
  • Urinary retention is another symptom of BPH. In this condition, men will not be able to urinate despite the urge. It is due to the complete obstruction of the urethra

Basically, some men with only slightly enlarged prostates have significant symptoms, whereas some men with enlarged prostates have only minor urinary symptoms. If you experience any of these symptoms, then you should rush to your doctor or your medical professional. He will advise or recommend the exact treatment.

 Treating enlarged prostate glands:

There are a number of treatments available for enlarged prostates including medications and surgeries. Treatments for BPH totally depend on your symptoms, the size of your prostate, age, and preference.

Medications:

Below are the various medication options that are used to treat mild symptoms of enlarged prostate, these include:

  • Alpha blockers – Alpha blockers like Terazosin, Doxazosin, Alfuzosin, Silodosin, and Tamsulosin are the medications that help in relaxing bladder neck muscles and muscle fibers in the prostate by making it easier to urinate. These medications are very effective and you will feel an increased urinary flow along with less urgency of urination
  • 5 alpha reductase inhibitors – These medications are very effective and help in shrinking the prostate gland by preventing hormonal changes. Medications like Finasteride and Dutasteride generally work best for enlarged prostates. You may notice the signs of improvement in several weeks or even months after taking these medications. Moreover, some of the side effects of these medications include decreased sexual desire or retrograde ejaculation
  • Tadalafil (Cialis)Tadalafil medication is also known as phosphodiesterase inhibitors, which is mainly used to treat impotence (erectile dysfunction). It is also used as a treatment for prostate enlargement. Keep in mind this medicine can’t be used in combination with alpha blockers

How ED drugs work for BPH?

Various medications that work to treat ED may also work for treating BPH or enlarged prostate glands. Basically, drugs including Slidenafil, Tadalafil, and Vardenafil inhibit the enzyme phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE-5), which breaks down the chemical called cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) and increases the blood flow to the penis. Inhibiting PDE-5 can prevent the breakdown of cGMP and helps in increasing the blood flow to the penis. Moreover, the above mentioned ED medicines or pills can boost cGMP levels in the bladder and prostate, as well. This means these increase the cGMP, which allows the blood flow in the penis and helps the bladder and prostate cells to relax, which leads to greater urinary flow.

Surgery:

Surgery is the advanced option to treat enlarged prostate glands. It is only recommended by your doctor if medication isn’t effective or if you have severe symptoms. Generally, surgeries help in reducing the size of the prostate gland by treating the enlarged prostate tissue that blocks the flow of urine. Surgery option decision is also based on a number of factors, including size of your prostate and the severity of symptoms.

  • Transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) – This surgery option has been a common procedure for treating enlarged prostate for many years. In this procedure, a surgeon places a special lighted scope into your urethra by using small cutting tools to remove all but the outer part of the prostate (prostate resection)
  • Transurethral incision of the prostate (TUIP or TIP) – This surgery option is for those who have moderately enlarged or small prostate gland, especially if they are suffering from other health problems. TUIP surgery is performed by the specialist by making one or two small cuts in the prostate gland to open up a channel in the urethra. This makes the urine flow much easier for the person
  • Open prostatectomy – If you have large prostate or bladder damage, then this surgery is the best option. This surgery is also known as open and is the most effective treatment for men with severe prostate enlargement because the surgeon makes an incision in your lower abdomen to reach your prostate

It is a fact that every medication and surgery may cause side effects, such as semen flowing backward into the bladder instead of passing out through the penis during ejaculation, impotence (erectile dysfunction, and loss of bladder control (incontinence). But, it is your doctor’s decision as well as yours on which treatment option you have to choose.

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Max Jones

A compulsive reader and a writer with a diploma in nutrition and diet. In my free time I love to explore my city while I promote pedal-biking.

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