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Men's Health - CONDITIONS WE TREAT
An enlarged prostate is also called BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia).
An enlarged prostate causes urination problems in most men.
The prostate keeps growing throughout a man’s life. A normal prostate size is around 30-40g, about the size of a walnut.
Cancer and noncancerous growth of prostate tissue can co-exist in the prostate.
A wise urologist once said, “50% of men currently see a urologist, and the remaining 50% will eventually see a urologist.”
An enlarged prostate can affect men as early as 45 years of age.
50% of men will have BPH symptoms between 50-60 years of age.
90% of men over the age of 80 years will have urination symptoms from an enlarged prostate.
As the prostate grows, the prostate can pinch upon the tube that drains urine from the bladder. This tube is called the urethra. When the urethra gets narrowed or compressed, urine has a difficult time draining from the bladder (picture a kink in a hose). The bladder will work very hard to get the urine out, but a hard working bladder is not a healthy bladder. As the bladder works harder, the bladder gets weaker. Overtime, a hard working bladder remodels into a thick weakened poorly functioning bladder— the bladder muscle essentially burns itself out.
Symptoms of BPH can include weak urinary stream, getting up more than once at night, dribbling, frequency, urgency, difficulty starting the urine stream, straining to void, feeling that urine is left in the bladder.
Do not ignore these symptoms. The bladder can weaken so much that eventually it cannot empty urine. When the bladder cannot squeeze, a man may need to use a foley catheter to empty his bladder, which can be permanent for his lifetime. When a bladder cannot empty, there may also be kidney failure and possibly permanent kidney damage.
If you have bothersome urinary symptoms, these symptoms may be signs of urinary obstruction from an enlarged prostate, but also may be signs from stones, bladder infection, urethral stricture, overactive bladder, or even cancer.
Treatment of an enlarged prostate can be with prescription medications, in-office procedures, or surgery.
Medications for prostate obstruction include alpha blockers (Example – tamsulosin) and 5 alpha reductase inhibitors (Example – finasteride). All prostate medications have sexual side effects and these sexual side effects are often bothersome and undesired.
In office procedures, such as UroLift have revolutionized treatment for enlarged prostate symptoms.
Surgical procedures include transurethral resection of prostate and robotic simple prostatectomy.
There are additional prostate treatments on the horizon and Dr. Fronczakis actively evaluating new and upcoming technologies.
Nitrous sedation is offered for all prostate procedures at Modern Urology.