Prostate enlargement is extremely common in men over fifty. In fact, it is the most common ailment among men this age.
Due to the location of the prostate, its growth squeezes the urinary tract. Men with enlarged prostates tend to suffer incontinence.
Incontinence varies from frequent urination to the inability to urinate to a weak stream or a small amount of blood in the urine. While this condition is uncomfortable, there are many methods available to reduce the problem and enhance function of the narrowed urethra.
Many people with prostate enlargement do not need surgery or even medical attention. However, if you notice symptoms, it is best to have a doctor monitor your condition.
Symptoms may flare up that require medications. Flomax is one such drug that can help reduce the size of the prostate and allow urine to flow normally.
When you first notice symptoms, consult your doctor. If you feel they have become worse or more severe, do not hesitate to contact him again. It is also recommended that men over forty have regular prostate exams.
Symptoms that require immediate attention include: urinary tract infections, blood in the urine, severe urinary retention, and bladder stones. If you let the minor symptoms slide, you may end up in more pain with these more serious problems. These also require more intensive methods of treatment than medication.
When the problem is allowed to go unchecked, simple medication may not be enough to relieve the symptoms and remedy the condition. Invasive procedures may then become necessary. Because they involve going through the urethra, they can be uncomfortable or painful.
These procedures destroy excess tissue or widen existing tissue to allow smoother passage of urine.
Two methods are widely used for destroying excess tissue through the urethra: electromagnetically-generated heat and microwave thermotherapy.
Another method, called photo-selective vaporization, is used to reduce urinary discomfort. Incisions are made in the bladder. This procedure affects the ability to have sex, but only for a short period after the surgery.
While these procedures can offer help for many men suffering from prostate enlargement, they may not be enough if the condition has worsened. Prostate cancer may be a result of an enlarged prostate, and other surgeries may be required.
Again, there are surgical options if this is the case. Transurethral resection of the prostate, or TURP, involves removal of portions of the prostate. In more severe cases, a radical prostatectomy may be performed. This involves the removal of the entire prostate.
Side effects of both surgeries include sexual dysfunction. Men may notice a decrease in sexual performance, including difficult ejaculating. Additional surgeries can be undergone to remedy these side effects.
The key in preventing prostate problems is understanding that it does continue to grow in late adulthood, and that there can be symptoms you will need to recognize if it becomes enlarged.
Yearly prostate exams are recommended for men over forty, and regular doctor’s visits can keep prostate enlargement symptoms in check. Prostate enlargement is a natural result of aging, but it doesn’t have to severely impact your life.