What Is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (Enlarged Prostate)?
Benign prostatic hyperplasia – also known as an enlarged prostate – is a common issue in men as they get older. Because of its location just beneath the bladder, an enlarged prostate gland can block urine flow and cause symptoms that affect the urinary tract, bladder and kidneys.
It isn’t clear exactly what causes benign prostate hyperplasia, though it is common for the prostate to continue to grow throughout a man’s lifetime. In some cases, an enlarged prostate may be caused by age-related sex hormone changes.
Benign prostatic hyperplasia is most common in men over the age of 40, affecting approximately one-third of men by age 60 and about half of men by age 80.
The symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia include:
Difficulty completely emptying the bladder
Dribbling at the end of urination
Urgent or frequent urge to urinate
Urinating more frequently at night
Trouble starting urination
Weak urine stream
An enlarged prostate gland can also cause some less common symptoms like:
Blood in the urine
Inability to urinate
The severity of symptoms varies. Some cases of benign prostatic hyperplasia resolve on their own, while others require treatment. The condition does not appear to raise a man’s risk of prostate cancer.
Treatment options for benign prostatic hyperplasia include:
Medications – These include alpha blocks, 5-alpha reductase inhibitors.
Minimally invasive, robotic or traditional surgery – This is typically recommended for moderate to severe symptoms that haven’t improved with medication or if you have complications.
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