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|Posted By : Dr.Manish Motwani, M.S, M.D. and Diplomats, etc.|
|Posted On : 22 Sep 2009 (Total Views : 2135)|
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What is prostate gland?
The prostate is a glandular organ, about size of a walnut, present in males. The prostate is normally about 3 cm long and it lies at the neck of the bladder and in front of the rectum. The prostate gland produces fluid that makes up part of the semen.
You will be surprised to know that Urinary obstruction from prostatic hypertrophy has been described for many centuries, starting with the ancient Egyptians in the 15th century BC. The word "prostate" comes from the Greek prostat, which means "one who stands before or in front of", which, in this case, means in front of the bladder.
What is Benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH?
Benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) is a condition that affects the prostate gland of the male reproductive system. The prostate gland enlarges in size though this may not cause problems until late in life. It is estimated that about 90% of men in the age group of 70-85 years have BPH. It is one of the most common problems experienced by men during the old age.
As the name suggests, there is hyperplasia or overgrowth of the prostatic tissue. This leads to enlargement of the prostate gland. Now since prostate surrounds the urethra. So any enlargement will definitely cause constriction of the urethra. So in BPH, the flow of urine is also reduced, making it increasingly difficult to empty the bladder. Similar symptoms may also be present when a person has prostate cancer. So it is very important for the physician to carefully rule out the possibility of the latter. To know more about prostate cancer, click here.
What are the causes?
For centuries, BPH has been associated with older men. The cause of BPH is not well understood. There have been various theories which have been put forward for the same. One suggests that men produce two hormones through out their life- oestrogen (small quantity) and testosterone (high proportion). As aging occurs, the amount of testosterone decreases, leaving a higher proportion of oestrogen. Studies done on animals have suggested that BPH may occur because the higher amount of oestrogen increases the activity of substances that promote cell growth. One more theory says that BPH is a result of lack of DHT, a substance which is derived from testosterone. DHT helps in controlling the growth of prostate gland. But due to aging, most animals lose their ability to produce DHT and this may cause BPH.
What are the symptoms?
A person having BPH may remain asymptomatic for quite some time. Infact he may just come to know about it during a clinical examination. Sometimes a person may suddenly start experiencing urination problems. So it is always advised to go for a routine health check up. AASTHA offers various Health Packages for different age groups to ensure proper assessment of health.
problems related with urination, like:
* incomplete emptying of the bladder
* difficulty in starting to pass urine,
* weak stream,
* need to strain to pass urine,
* need to pass urine urgently,
* urgency and leaking or dribbling
* Feeling a burning sensation or pain when passing urine.
* Frequent urinary tract infection as incomplete voiding leads to stasis of bacteria in the bladder
How is it diagnosed?
Digital Rectal Examination (DRE)
Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA) Blood Test
Urine Flow Study
What are the treatment options?
Today, advancement in medical science has provided many new ways to treat the cases of BPH. Men who have this problem usually need some kind of treatment at some time. In case the person presents with a mild and asymptomatic case of BPH, the physician may closely monitor the patient and give the treatment only if the symptoms deteriorate. But if a person comes with symptomatic picture of BPH, there are two ways to treat it.
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