By the age of 70, forty percent of all men will have prostate enlargement that can be felt upon examination. Moreover, one in six men will develop prostate cancer at some point during their lifetime. Fortunately, whether the diagnosis is benign prostate enlargement, prostatitis or prostate cancer, when it comes to treatment, prostate patients have many choices and options.
The least serious of all prostate problems is benign prostatic hyperplasia - commonly known as benign prostate enlargement. Benign prostate enlargement is characterized by an enlarged prostate that is not associated with a cancerous tumor or an infection. Many cases of benign prostate enlargement cause no symptoms; however, if the prostate gets big enough, it can press on the urethra and even close it off, causing urinary tract infections that can be very serious. As for treatment, prostate enlargement patients are evaluated on a case by case basis.
The first possible treatment prostate enlargement patients can choose from is watchful waiting. Essentially there is no active treatment, other than to monitor the prostate regularly to ensure no complications. This treatment is a good option when the patient feels few effects from the enlargement. The next treatment prostate enlargement patients who are having symptoms can choose from is medications. Medications that work to relax the muscle tissue in the prostate or to reduce the swelling can be used in patients with moderate symptoms.
The best treatment prostate patients with severe symptoms or enlargement that is causing frequent infections can choose is surgical removal of the prostate. When surgery is chosen, the most preferred technique for benign enlargement patients is transurethral resection. This involves the surgeon inserting a cytoscope through the urethra to the prostate gland, where it is carefully removed in small pieces. By going through the urethra, complications normally associated with open surgery can be eliminated.
Another prostate problem is prostatitis, or inflammation of the prostate. This is often due to a bacterial infection, whether acute or chronic, but sometimes occurs for no known reason. The options for treatment for prostatitis include antibiotics, anti-inflammatories and lifestyle changes. For those with acute or chronic prostatitis, the treatment for prostatitis must include antibiotics. Then they have the option of also adding anti-inflammatories to reduce symptoms or to make lifestyle changes to lessen the likelihood of recurrence. For non-bacterial prostatitis, the symptoms can be managed with anti-inflammatories or lifestyle changes as well.
Finally, when it comes to prostate cancer, treatment options vary significantly based on the size of the tumor and whether or not it has spread. As a general overview, the 3 main treatment options used for most prostate cancers are watchful waiting (the same technique used with most benign prostate enlargement patients), radiation and surgery. If you receive a prostate cancer diagnosis, you can research your options based on the type and stage of prostate cancer you have at www.prostate.com.
Whether you receive a diagnosis of benign enlargement or full-blown prostate cancer, you should know that you have options. Of course, only you and your doctor can make the final decision as to what's best for you, but it's important to be fully informed before making any decisions.