It is a gland in the male reproductive system, which is muscular in nature. It is positioned around the urethra and is responsible for making most of the fluid in the semen.
The muscular action of this gland is responsible to propel the semen through the urethra during the climax.
With aging in men, practically half of all the male population develop an enlargement of the prostate by the age of 50 years.
However, it will be termed as BPH, with symptoms such as incontinence (urinary urgency) results. Prostate enlargement is medically termed as Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)/ Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy.
Hyperplasia is an abnormal multiplication of cells. BPH is a condition that resulted from the multiplication of cells of the prostate gland, thereby increasing its size.
The result is it compresses the urethra it surrounds and impedes the regular flow of urine. BPH is not equivalent to prostate cancer and neither does it contribute to the risk of cancer.
BPH affects the lifestyle of the individual developing the condition, because of its symptoms, but is not a life-threatening condition.
BPH generally begins with mild symptoms. The intensity of the symptoms may vary from person to person. The general trend is, from mild to worse over a period of time.
If the symptoms are neglected; the most severe cases report kidney failure. There are no specific predisposing factors determining one's proneness to BPH.
Some men may have severe symptoms with little enlargement, while others may have substantial enlargement of the prostate with mild symptoms.
In some cases, it has been observed that symptoms stabilize and may even improve gradually with time.
What are the uncommon symptoms of BPH?
Complications in BPH are rare and may arise only when the mild symptoms are medically unattended.
However, the observed ones are as described below-
It begins with the medical history, to identify whether one's father or brother has been diagnosed with the condition, followed by a physical examination.
Here the doctor evaluates the size and shape of the patient's prostate through rectal examination. After which the following diagnostic tests may be recommended, depending on the severity of the condition-
This procedure is performed under local anesthesia. Here doctors insert a tiny tube into the femoral artery of the thigh, by making a small incision in the appropriate location on the body.
This tube is directed to the prostate artery, surrounding the gland. On the positioning, a fluid containing tiny particles is injected into the artery. These tiny particles block the blood supply to the prostate, thereby shrinking the gland.
Interventional Radiologists perform this technique. Studies have shown very few side effects of this technique.
This procedure may not require hospitalization and in most cases, the patient is sent home the same day.
This procedure is performed under general anesthesia. It does not require any incisions to be made on the body.
The doctor inserts a resectoscope into the tip of the penis, through the urethra to the position of the prostate gland. The prostate tissue is clipped from the inside and flushed into the bladder by constant irrigation, using a fluid.
On completion, the irrigated fluid is flushed out of the bladder.
After the procedure, a catheter is placed for 24 to 28 hours. The catheter is removed when the swelling subsides and the patient can urinate on his own. Post-surgery, blood may be seen in the urine.
But, if the consistency is thick like blood, the doctor needs to be contacted immediately. Urination post-surgery is painful but improves over a period of eight weeks.
This procedure requires hospitalization for a day or two.
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