Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH)

What is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)?

Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is a non-cancerous condition that affects the prostate gland in males. The prostate gland, which is located just below the bladder, tends to enlarge as men age. This enlargement can put pressure on the urethra, resulting in urinary symptoms such as frequent urination, weak urine stream, difficulty starting or stopping urine flow, and a feeling of incomplete bladder emptying. BPH is a common condition among aging males and can impact their quality of life.

Treatment options for BPH vary depending on the severity of symptoms and may include lifestyle changes, medications, minimally invasive procedures, or surgery. Lifestyle changes may involve reducing caffeine and alcohol intake, practicing pelvic floor exercises, and avoiding fluid intake before bedtime. Medications can include alpha blockers, which relax the muscles in the prostate and bladder neck, or 5-alpha reductase inhibitors, which can shrink the prostate gland. Minimally invasive procedures such as transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) or laser ablation may be recommended for more moderate symptoms, while surgery such as prostatectomy may be considered for severe cases of BPH.

When is it necessary to see a doctor?

It is necessary to see a doctor if you experience symptoms related to urination, such as frequent urination, difficulty starting or stopping urination, weak urine stream, incomplete emptying of the bladder, or blood in the urine. A doctor can perform a physical examination, conduct diagnostic tests, and provide appropriate medical management or referral to a specialist, if needed.

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