The prostate is a gland that is a part of the male reproductive system that sits at the base of the bladder and surrounds the urethra (the tube that takes urine from the bladder through the penis). The purpose of the prostate gland is to produce fluid (semen) that protects and transports sperm.
Diseases related to the prostate are prostate enlargement (often referred to as benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH), prostatitis (inflammation, or an infection or damage, of the prostate), and prostate cancer.
The prostate gland is small in childhood, as the boy enters puberty the prostate increases in size up to 20 grams. Later it doubles again between the age 20 to 50 years.
Dribbling urine, burning sensation during urination, Frequent urination, Blood in the semen or urine, Frequent pain in the lower back, hips, pelvic, Urinary incontinence, Painful ejaculation are the symptoms of prostate enlargement.
The actual cause of prostate enlargement is not known. Few factors are linked to aging, family history, diabetes, lifestyle, hormonal changes.
Risk factors due to prostate enlargement are urinary tract infection, urinary retention, bladder stones, functioning of the kidney may decline and lead to failure. BPH is not life-threatening.
To diagnose the problem the urologist will perform a digital rectal exam, ask for patient history, Urine test, blood test, prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test.
To rule out other conditions these tests are done - Urinary flow test, postvoid residual volume test,24-hour voiding diary.
In case of severe conditions, the doctor may recommend a transrectal ultrasound, prostate biopsy, urodynamic and pressure-flow studies, cystoscopy.
Medications can reduce the prostate size in men if it is mild or moderated BPH. But it may not give relief to all the symptoms. There are surgical options available for severe prostate enlargement. Each has some benefits and side effects.
Prostatitis is swelling and inflammation of the prostate gland. This occurs due to a number of causes and sometimes the cause is not identified. Prostate infection is not very serious.
Symptoms include pain in the groin, pelvic area, flu-like symptoms, dysuria, difficulty in urinating, the urge of urinating.
The common cause of acute bacterial prostatitis could be due to strains of bacteria. This infection starts when bacteria in urine leak into the prostate. This is treated with antibiotics.
Prostatitis can also be caused by nerve damage in the lower urinary tract, which could be due to surgery or trauma to the area.
The complications of prostatitis can include bacterial infection of the blood, inflammation of the coiled tube, prostatic abscess, semen abnormalities, and infertility that may occur due to chronic prostatitis.
Diagnosing of prostatitis involves urine tests, blood tests, post-prostatic massage, imaging tests.
Treatment for prostatitis can include antibiotics, alpha -blockers, anti-inflammatory agents.
Prostatitis can happen gradually or suddenly and can be cured quickly either on its own or with medications.
Prostate cancer is a cancer that occurs in the prostate. The prostate is a small gland in men that produces the seminal fluid that nourishes and transports sperm. This is the most common cancer in men. It is usually slow-growing. The risk increases along with age.
Localized prostate cancer has no symptoms in some people. Some may have urinary problems similar to those with BPH. People with advanced prostate cancer may have blood in their urine, pain in their lower back, pelvis, and thighs.
The exact cause of prostate cancer is unknown. Multiple factors may be involved such as genetics, exposure to toxins like chemicals or radiation.
Mutations in the DNA may lead to the growth of cancerous cells.
The Prostate screening and diagnostic tests may include a digital rectal exam, PSA, ultrasound, MRI, tissue biopsy.
Treatments for prostate cancer are surgery, radiation therapy, hormone therapy, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and alternative medications.
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