What is Benign Prostate Hyperplasia and why you don’t have to be scared of it.
Find out more about the minimally invasive surgical procedure that can free you from the symptoms caused by an enlarged prostate.
What is benign prostate hyperplasia?
Benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) is a complicated name for prostate enlargement. For a lot of men, being diagnosed with BPH may come as a shock and will leave them terrified that this could mean they have or will develop prostate cancer. Having an enlarged prostate doesn’t mean you are more likely to have cancer, and studies found that the two are not correlated.
If you have received a diagnosis of BPH, it is good to know that you are not alone. In fact, BPH frequently happens in men over 40 years old, and it is likely that you will experience some prostate enlargement as you get older.
What are the symptoms of BPH?
Although BPH doesn’t often cause any disturbances, growth of prostate tissue can lead to lower urinary tract symptoms. Most commonly, it can cause bladder obstruction which makes urinating difficult and leads to other conditions, such as urinary tract infections and kidney stones.
How do I find out if I have BPH?
The diagnosis is usually made by assessing the patient history and by physical examination. The presence of urinary discomfort in older men is typically indicative of prostate enlargement. A digital rectal examination can be beneficial in evaluating the size of the prostate, and blood tests can identify abnormalities that are associated with excessive prostatic tissue growth.
Are there any treatments for BPH?
In men who present BPH with none or very mild symptoms, it is improbable that the symptoms will develop and become more severe. Therefore, they don’t have to be treated and will be watched closely by their doctors over the following years to ensure that no problems will arise.
For men who present bothersome symptoms caused by BPH, there are a few treatment options available. Some groups of medication are effective in improving the urinary discomfort caused by BPH such as Tamsulosin and Dutasteride.
For patients who present adverse effects to the pharmacological treatment or that have more severe symptoms, there are minimally invasive surgical options available.
One of the most commonly used techniques is the Transurethral Microwave Therapy (TUMT) which consists of the insertion of an antenna into the urethra. This antenna will reach the bladder and release microwaves that will destroy the excess prostatic tissue.
Another option is the Photoselective Vaporization of the Prostate (PVP) which is done by inserting a probe also through the tip of the penis that will carry a laser device that can selectively destroy the tissue that is growing around the urethra.
How long does it take to recover from prostate surgery?
Both of these minimally invasive techniques can be done only with topical anesthesia, and don’t require any big insertions or cuts. They present much less risk of bleeding for the patient and are quite quick and straightforward procedures. The recovery process is short, and there is no need for a hospital stay.
Having symptoms or not, you should always keep an eye on your prostate health and get regular check-ups if you're over 40 years old. If you present any of the classic urinary symptoms of BPH keep in mind that there are many treatments available and that our team can help you choose the one that is more suitable for you.
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