How to Treat Prostate Enlargement
Alpha-blockers are a class of drugs that will
Hi I'm Dr. Bob Lahita, Chairman of Medicine at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center and Professor of Medicine at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. The topic for this segment is how to treat an enlarged prostate.This is a very, very common condition in men. It can occur in young men over the age of 40, to say 50, and above the age of 50 it is said sometimes that over 25% of all men have enlarged prostates. We tell our house staff and our residents to examine the prostate when there are any symptoms of prostate enlargement.What are those symptoms? Dribbling, inability to create a stream on urination. Hesitancy and or pain on urination. Someone who has to 'bear down' and gets only a couple of drops of urine and always feels like there's more urine or some more to be passed through the urethra. This is commonly called benign prostatic hyperplasia - BPH for short. It's readily treated, but before treating it the doctor should do a digital rectal exam and some doctors prefer to do additional testing to rule out things like prostatic carcinoma which is not a rarity among men.Now a big symptom for prostatic enlargement besides the problems with urination would be erectile dysfunction. If erectile dysfunction occurs at the same time that hesitancy, dribbling and incontinence or difficulty urinating, with pain, occurs - it's a good bet that you may have an enlarged prostate and it's usually benign so not to be feared. Nevertheless, it's easily treated.How is it treated? We use something called alpha-blockers which is a class of drugs that will shrink down this enlarged prostate and in addition, something called five alpha reductase inhibition. Five alpha reductase is a hormonal enzyme that involves male hormones. As you may know, male hormones are really probably one of the major reasons for prostatic enlargement. The prostate is that gland that sits at the base of the testicles in the perineum between the testicles and the rectum where the seminal fluid is really to pass through, and this is a very, very important gland because it serves significant purposes in making fluid that accompanies the sperm.So an infection of the prostate is one thing called prostatitis and treated with special antibiotics. But an enlargement of the prostate that does not involve infection is something that is also readily treated. The differentiation has to be made by your doctor who I am sure will do a digital exam and feel the texture of the prostate - whether it's even, rubbery, hard , nodular, etc.For more information about this go to About.com.