What is a Prostate Gland?
The prostate is a walnut-sized gland that forms part of the male reproductive system. The gland is made of two lobes, or regions enclosed by an outer layer of tissue. The Prostate is located in front of the rectum and just below the bladder, where urine is stored. The prostate also surrounds the urethra, the canal through which urine passes out of the body.
Urinary problems in men:
Many men experience urinary symptoms as they age, which may be caused by inflammation of the prostate gland (prostatitis).
Bacteria sometimes cause prostatitis (inflammation of the prostate). More commonly, the underlying cause is uncertain. You should consult your doctor promptly if you experience:
- lower back pain
- pain in the groin
- urgent and frequent urination.
Treatment with antibiotics is essential for acute bacterial prostatitis. Admission to hospital is often necessary and, as with chronic (ongoing) bacterial prostatitis, specific antibacterial drugs are required for a long time.
(Benign prostatic hyperplasia)
In the older male, symptoms may be the result of a blockage in the tubes due to a benign (non-cancerous) enlargement of the prostate gland (BPH) -benign prostatic hyperplasia. The most common symptom is difficulty emptying your bladder.
Urinary symptoms may become noticeable enough that they require treatment. Not all urinary symptoms are due to changes to the prostate. Also, some men have enlarged prostates and yet experience few, if any, symptoms.
Symptoms of urinary problems
Urinary symptoms commonly experienced with prostate problems include:
- the need to urinate frequently during the night
- urinating more often during the day
- urinary urgency
- urine stream is slow to start
- urine dribbling for some time after finishing urination
- a sensation that the bladder isn’t fully emptied after urination
- lack of force to the urine flow, which makes directing the stream difficult
- The sensation of needing to go again soon after urinating.
Urinary symptoms to be followed up
See your doctor if you experience
- being unable to urinate
- painful urination
- any blood in the urine at all
- any discharge from the penis
- continuous or severe urinary incontinence (you can’t hold your urine).
Problems with enlarged prostate gland
BPH causes enlargement of the prostate, which may cause troublesome symptoms. BPH is more common as menget older.
The urethra passes through the prostate gland, so men may have problems urinating if the enlarged gland restricts the flow of urine. If the flow stops completely, a catheter is required to empty the bladder. It is rare for this form of acute urinary retention to cause kidney damage.
An enlarged prostate doesn’t always cause urinary problems. Studies indicate that the size of a man’s prostate gland has little influence on the type or severity of his urination problems. BPH is just one possible cause of urinary symptoms.
Another cause of urinary symptoms can be changes to the muscular wall of the bladder, which may cause spasms of the bladder or weaken the passing urine.
Diagnosis of BPH and urinary problems
- Physical examination – including rectal examination to check the size and shape of your prostate gland
- A urine check – to ensure the prostate is not infected
- A flow-rate check (URO FLOWMETRY) – to estimate the speed with which you pass urine
- An ultrasound examination – to assess if the bladder is emptying completely and to examine your kidneys
- Urodynamic – a series of tests on the bladder to see how your urinary system is functioning may be recommended in some circumstances.
Treatment of BPH symptoms:-
Drug therapy: –
If urinary problems are caused by infection or enlargement of
the prostate gland, treatment may include:
- A long course of antibacterial medication (for bacterial prostatitis) because infection is difficult to get rid of, the antibacterial medication will need to be taken for many weeks.
- Medication to improve urine flow and other symptoms(for obstruction caused by an enlarged prostate)
- Alpha blockers,
- Enzyme (5-alpha-reductase) inhibitors like:
- Finasteride (Finast)
- Dutasteride (Dutas, Dutagen, etc)