It’s well known that the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test used to screen for prostate cancer is imprecise. Elevations in PSA levels may signal prostate cancer, but they also may be due to nonmalignant prostate conditions. Further complicating the screening process is that several medications and a number of other modifiable … Read More
Prostatitis refers to not one, but several conditions in which the prostate becomes swollen and inflamed. Unlike the prostate growth known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), which typically affects older men, prostatitis is more common in men under age 50.
A few different types of prostatitis exist. By far the most common form is chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome. What causes this condition isn?t clear, but it may stem from a bacterial infection, an immune response to a past infection, or damage to the pelvic nerve.
Symptoms of chronic prostatitis include a frequent and urgent need to urinate, painful urination, lower abdominal pain, and uncomfortable ejaculation. The condition can be hard to diagnose, because tests for bacteria are usually negative. Chronic prostatitis treatments include antibiotics to clear up an infection, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for pain, and alpha-adrenergic blockers to relieve urinary symptoms.
Acute bacterial prostatitis and chronic bacterial prostatitis are less common forms of prostatitis. In acute bacterial prostatitis, bacteria infect the prostate gland, causing sudden and painful inflammation. Symptoms are similar to those of chronic prostatitis, including frequent and urgent urination. The main treatment is a two-to-six-week course of antibiotics.
Bacteria also cause chronic bacterial prostatitis, although the symptoms tend to be milder and last for at least three months. Treatment also involves antibiotics, but the course is longer than it is with acute bacterial prostatitis. Men must take antibiotics for at least four to 12 weeks, and sometimes for several months, to fully eradicate the infection.
The rarest form of this prostate condition is asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis, which is usually detected during an examination for another urinary tract or reproductive condition. Asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis causes no symptoms?the only evidence of the disease is white blood cells in the urine or semen?and it does not need to be treated.
After skin cancer, prostate cancer is the most-common cancer in men. And it’s the most-common cause of cancer-related death in men after lung cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, one in nine men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetimes, and one in 41 will die from … Read More
For many men with prostatitis, fatigue can be a daily companion, albeit an unwanted one. In fact, among the broad and diverse range of symptoms accompanying chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS)—the most common type of prostatitis—fatigue, pain, and urinary problems can be the most debilitating. But the adverse effects … Read More
What are the risk factors for prostate cancer? It’s a question that remains unanswered despite a growing body of research identifying risk factors and prevention strategies. Scientists do know that prostate cancer symptoms occur when changes or mutations in the DNA of prostatic cells cause abnormal proliferation of those cells, … Read More
There is no universally accepted "normal" PSA level. In the past, a PSA of 4 nanograms per milliliter of blood (ng/ml) or less was considered normal; however, more recent studies have shown that some men with PSAs below 4 have prostate cancer and some men with PSAs over 4 do … Read More
An infection can occur almost anywhere in the genitourinary system. In fact, urinary tract infections are so common, they’ve been branded with a widely used abbreviation: UTI. Scrotal infections such as epididymitis aren’t as common as UTIs and haven’t earned a convenient abbreviation, but they can be extremely painful and … Read More
Interstitial cystitis is a complex, hard-to-diagnose, and difficult-to-treat condition characterized by an inflamed bladder wall, a scarred or stiffened bladder, diminished bladder capacity, and bleeding within the bladder. That’s a mouthful, isn’t it? In layman’s terms, interstitial cystitis involves extremely frequent urination with pelvic pain that worsens when you eat … Read More
Urinary incontinence (UI) is a common, embarrassing, and inconvenient problem that has a significant impact on our social, physical, and emotional well-being. In the United States, it affects up to 1 in 2 women and 1 in 6 men. Absorbent products make life bearable by soaking up urine, protecting clothing, … Read More
Historically, a man complaining of pelvic pain, urinary problems, and other hallmark signs of prostatitis would visit his doctor and receive repeated, prolonged courses of antibiotics. The thought was that a bacterial infection was the underlying culprit. We now know that such infections occur in only a small percentage of … Read More
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) is an increasingly recognized condition in which there is an elevated number of bacteria in the small intestines. The small intestine normally contains relatively few bacteria, but with SIBO, bacteria that are normally found in the colon—Escherichia coli, species of Enterococcus, Klebsiella pneumonia and Proteus … Read More