[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Prostatitis is a disease characterized by infection or inflammation in the prostate and sometimes in the surrounding areas that can cause intense pain. The prostate is an important part of men’s urinary and reproductive systems. It is a walnut-shaped gland, located around the urethra at the neck of the bladder and in front of the rectum, which produces a fluid that combines with semen and is crucial for men’s fertility. Inside the prostate are different lobes enclosed by an outer layer of tissue, and inflammation in the gland may provoke serious complications.

According to the National Institutes of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Disease (NIDDKD) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), “prostatitis is the most common urinary tract problem for men younger than age 50 and the third most common urinary tract problem for men older than age 50. Prostatitis accounts for about two million visits to health care providers in the United States each year. Chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome is the most common and least understood form of prostatitis.”

Prostatitis Development and Causes

The disease can be developed by men at any age or race and it affects 10 to 15 percent of the U.S. male population. There are four different types of prostatitis, known as chronic prostatitis / chronic pelvic pain syndrome, acute bacterial prostatitis, chronic bacterial prostatitis, and asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis, and the reasons for its development are associated with each type.

In the case of chronic prostatitis / chronic pelvic pain syndrome, the causes are not fully understood, but it is thought to be related to a microorganism, present in the body due to chemicals in the urine, the immune system’s response to a previous urinary tract infection (UTI), or nerve damage in the pelvic area. Therefore, nerve damage in the lower urinary tract due to surgery or trauma, as well as psychological stress are factors that increase the probability of developing chronic prostatitis / chronic pelvic pain syndrome.

Both acute bacterial prostatitis and chronic bacterial prostatitis are caused by a bacterial infection, but the acute type occurs suddenly and lasts a short time, while the chronic type develops slowly and lasts years. Men with recurrent or difficult to treat urinary tract infections are most likely to develop it. In addition, asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis is the type of condition that has no symptoms and may be diagnosed during examination for other urinary tract or reproductive tract disorders. Since it does not cause complications either, this type of prostatitis does not require treatment.

Symptoms and Diagnosis of Prostatitis

The symptoms experienced by each patient can differ depending on the causes and on the patient. In the case of chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome, patients often experience pain or discomfort lasting three or more months between the scrotum and anus, in the central lower abdomen, in the penis, in the scrotum, and in the lower back. Pain during or after ejaculation is another common symptom, while other symptoms include pain in the urethra during or after urination, pain in the penis during or after urination, frequent urination, urinary urgency, a weak or an interrupted urine stream.

In the case of acute bacterial prostatitis, the symptoms come on suddenly, are severe, and include urinary frequency, urinary urgency, fever, chills, a burning feeling or pain during urination, pain in the genital area, groin, lower abdomen, or lower back, frequent urination during periods of sleep, nausea and vomiting, body aches, urinary retention, trouble starting a urine stream, a weak or an interrupted urine stream, urinary blockage, and urinary tract infection. In addition, the symptoms of chronic bacterial prostatitis are similar to those of acute bacterial prostatitis, but less severe.

When a patient experiences these symptoms, the physician analyzes the personal and family medical history, and conducts both physical exams and medical tests. During the physical exam, the physician examines the body looking for discharge from the urethra, enlarged or tender lymph nodes in the groin or a swollen or tender scrotum, and performs a digital rectal exam. The medical tests may include urinalysis, blood tests, urodynamic tests, cystoscopy, transrectal ultrasound, biopsy, and semen analysis.

Prostatis Treatment and Prognosis

The treatment for chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome is meant to reduce pain, discomfort, and inflammation, and despite the inefficacy of antibiotics, medication that can help include silodo, sin (Rapaflo), 5-alpha reductase inhibitors such as finasteride (Proscar) and dutasteride (Avodart), nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen sodium, glycosaminogly, cans such as chondroitin sulfate, muscle relaxants such as cyclobenzaprine (Amrix, Flexeril) and clonazepam (Klonopin), and neuromodulators such as amitriptyline, nortriptyline (Aventyl, Pamelor), and pregabalin (Lyrica).

Patients may also find comfort by taking sitz baths (a warm, shallow bath that covers the genitals), local heat therapy with hot water bottles or heating pads, physical therapy, relaxation exercises, biofeedback, phyto, therapy with plant extracts, or acupuncture. In the case of acute bacterial prostatitis, the treatment is based on antibiotics, which depend on the type of bacteria causing the infection. Patients are also recommended to avoid or reduce intake of substances that irritate the bladder, such as alcohol, caffeinated beverages, and acidic and spicy foods, as well as to increase intake of liquids to urinate often, which helps flush bacteria from the bladder.

Patients with chronic bacterial prostatitis are also treated with antibiotics, but while the former need treatment for about two weeks, the latter are treated for six months. A different type of antibiotic or combination of antibiotics may also be needed to prevent the infection from keeping coming back. Patients who suffer from chronic prostatitis / chronic pelvic pain syndrome are often prescribed alpha blockers, which help relax the bladder muscles near the prostate, lessen symptoms such as painful urination and treat urinary retention. If not treated, prostatitis may cause bacterial infection in the bloodstream, prostatic abscess, which is a pus-filled cavity in the prostate, sexual dysfunction, or inflammation of reproductive organs near the prostate

Note: BPH News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

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