Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

Also called: benign prostatic hyperplasia

The prostate is a gland in men. It helps make semen, the fluid that contains sperm. The prostate surrounds the tube that carries urine out of the body. As men age, their prostate grows bigger. If it gets too large, it can cause problems. An enlarged prostate is also called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Most men will get BPH as they get older. Symptoms often start after age 50.

BPH is not cancer, and it does not seem to increase your chance of getting prostate cancer. But the early symptoms are the same. Check with your doctor if you have

  • A frequent and urgent need to urinate, especially at night
  • Trouble starting a urine stream or making more than a dribble
  • A urine stream that is weak, slow, or stops and starts several times
  • The feeling that you still have to go, even just after urinating
  • Small amounts of blood in your urine

Severe BPH can cause serious problems over time, such as urinary tract infections, and bladder or kidney damage. If it is found early, you are less likely to develop these problems.

Tests for BPH include a digital rectal exam, blood and imaging tests, a urine flow study, and examination with a scope called a cystoscope. Treatments include watchful waiting, medicines, nonsurgical procedures, and surgery.

NIH: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases

Symptoms of Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

The following features are indicative of Enlarged Prostate (BPH):
  • frequent need to urinate
  • increased frequency of urination at night
  • difficulty starting urination
  • weak urine stream
  • straining while urinating
  • dribbling at the end of urination
  • inability to completely empty the bladder
  • inability to urinate
  • blood in the urine
It is possible that Enlarged Prostate (BPH) shows no physical symptoms and still is present in a patient.

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Common Causes of Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

The following are the most common causes of Enlarged Prostate (BPH):
  • change in hormonal balance
  • over age
  • changes in the cells of the testicles

Risk Factors for Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

The following factors may increase the likelihood of Enlarged Prostate (BPH):
  • age between 60-80
  • family history
  • diabetes
  • heart disease
  • obesity

Prevention of Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

Yes, it may be possible to prevent Enlarged Prostate (BPH). Prevention may be possible by doing the following:
  • reduce intake of more liquids
  • eat nutritional food

Occurrence of Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

Number of Cases

The following are the number of Enlarged Prostate (BPH) cases seen each year worldwide:
  • Very common > 10 Million cases

Common Age Group

Enlarged Prostate (BPH) most commonly occurs in the following age group:
  • Aged > 40 years

Common Gender

Enlarged Prostate (BPH) most commonly occurs in the following gender:
  • Male

Lab Tests and Procedures for Diagnosis of Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

The following lab tests and procedures are used to detect Enlarged Prostate (BPH):
  • Urinalysis: To determine the signs of infection in urine
  • Prostate-specific antigen blood test: To discriminate between cancer and prostate conditions
  • Urodynamic tests: To determine the bladder’s ability to hold urine and empty steadily and completely
  • Cystoscopy: To view inside the urethra and bladder
  • Transrectal ultrasound: To view the size of the prostate and any abnormalities
  • Biopsy: To diagnose whether prostate cancer is present

Doctor for Diagnosis of Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

Patients should visit the following specialists if they have symptoms of Enlarged Prostate (BPH):
  • Urologist
  • Radiologist
  • Pathologist

Complications of Enlarged Prostate (BPH) if untreated

Yes, Enlarged Prostate (BPH) causes complications if it is not treated. Below is the list of complications and problems that may arise if Enlarged Prostate (BPH) is left untreated:
  • urinary tract infections
  • bladder stones
  • chronic kidney disease
  • urinary retention
  • bladder damage
  • kidney damage

Procedures for Treatment of Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

The following procedures are used to treat Enlarged Prostate (BPH):
  • Transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP): To remove outer part of the prostate
  • Transurethral incision of the prostate (TUIP): To treat small or moderately enlarged prostate gland
  • Transurethral microwave thermotherapy (TUMT): To destroy the inner portion of the enlarged prostate gland, shrinking it and easing urine flow
  • Laser therapy: To destroy or remove overgrown prostate tissue

Self-care for Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

The following self-care actions or lifestyle changes may help in the treatment or management of Enlarged Prostate (BPH):
  • Limit beverages in the evening: Helps avoiding middle-of-the-night trips to the toilet
  • Limit caffeine and alcohol: Helps decreasing symptoms from worsening
  • Follow a healthy diet: Helps treating the condition
  • Stay active: Helps in reducing urinary problems
  • Stay warm: Helps preventing urine retention

Alternative Medicine for Treatment of Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

The following alternate medicine and therapies are known to help in the treatment or management of Enlarged Prostate (BPH):
  • Use palmetto extract supplements: Helps in reducing symptoms
  • Use beta-sitosterol extract supplements: Helps in reducing enlarged prostate symptoms
  • Intake pygeum and rye grass supplements: Helps in reducing enlarged prostate symptoms

Patient Support for Treatment of Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

The following actions may help Enlarged Prostate (BPH) patients:
  • Join a support group: Helps in coping with condition

Time for Treatment of Enlarged Prostate (BPH)

While time-period of treatment for each patient may vary, below is the typical time-period for Enlarged Prostate (BPH) to resolve if treated properly under an expert supervision:
  • Disease cannot be treated but only maintained or effects reduced

Last updated date

This page was last updated on 2/04/2019.
This page provides information for Enlarged Prostate (BPH).
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