All men, unless they take action, will probably over time experience prostate deterioration which will interfere with their life through urination problems, impotence, chronic pain, cancer and even death.
Prostatitis is the general term used to describe prostate inflammation (-itis). Because the term is so general, it does not adequately describe the range of abnormalities that can be associated with prostate inflammation. Therefore, four types of prostatitis are recognised:
- Acute bacterial prostatitis
- Chronic bacterial prostatitis
- Chronic prostatitis without infection
- Asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis.
On the scientific level, the causes of prostatitis are not completely understood. There is controversy among the most highly regarded experts. Keep in mind that any one person may have more than one cause operating at the same time. Or, looked at from another point of view, prostatitis could be several different diseases which present with the same or similar sets of symptoms in different individuals. :
There are three main schools of thought about the causes of prostatitis. The following are the most general: :
- Bacterial infection
- Auto-immune response or disordered immune response
- Neuromuscular, tension or physical injury problem
Additional possible causes: :
A uric acid disorder, prostate stones, a urethral stricture, a rare tumour, prostate cancer, benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH, non-cancerous growth of the prostate), a food allergy, a yeast infestation, a specific yeast problem from the genus candida or a virus. :
Common symptoms of prostate disorders are: :
- Sensation of not emptying your bladder completely after you have finished urinating
- Frequent urination (consistently in intervals of less than 2 hours and / or multiple times during the night)
- Interrupted urination (you have to stop and start several times during urination)
- Difficulty in postponing urination
- Weak or limited urinary stream
- Pushing and straining required to start urination
- A burning pain during urination
- Pain in lower back, in the area between the testicles and anus, in the lower belly or upper thighs, or above the pubic area. Pain may be worse during bowel movement
- Reduced ability to gain and hold erections, weak ejaculation and dissatisfaction with sexual performance
- Some pain during or after ejaculation
- Pain in the tip of your penis
- Fever and chills
- Loss of appetite.
Because the treatment is different for the four types of prostatitis, the correct diagnosis is very important. Non infectious prostatitis will not clear up with antimicrobial treatment, and infectious prostatitis will not go away without such treatment. :
If you have acute infectious prostatitis, you will usually need to take antimicrobial medication for 7 to 14 days. Almost all acute infections can be cured with this treatment. Analgesic drugs will relieve pain and discomfort and, at times, hospitalization may also be required. :
If you have chronic infectious prostatitis. you will require antimicrobial medication for a longer period of time – usually 4 to 12 weeks. About 60% of all cases of chronic infectious prostatitis clear up with this treatment. For some cases that do not respond to long-term, low-dose antimicrobial therapy or surgical removal of the infected portions of the prostate may be advised. :
If you have non infectious prostatitis, you will not need antimicrobial medication. Depending on the symptoms, you may receive one of a variety of treatments. If your condition responds to muscle relaxation, you may be given an alpha blocker, a drug that can relax the muscle tissue in the prostate and reduce the difficulty in urination. :
Tub baths or changes in diet may help to alleviate symptoms, although there is no scientific evidence that such “home remedies” are effective. :
Questions for your doctor
- What is the probable cause of my prostatitis?
- What are the treatment options? ?
- Will antibiotics be prescribed? ?
- Is this a long-term problem? ?
- Will it recur?
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