The prostate is a male gland that secretes the fluid (a part of the semen) which carries sperm from the testicles during ejaculation. The prostate is located just below the bladder and in front of the rectum. It surrounds the first inch of the urethra (the tube through which urine and sperm exit the body). Usually, the prostate gland starts to enlarge after middle age. When the prostate becomes enlarged, the condition is called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), or benign prostatic hypertrophy. The prostate gland undergoes two growth spurts: once during adolescence and the other around the age of 50. Though the prostate continues to grow during most of a man's life, the enlargement does not usually cause problems until late in life. About 75 percent of men over the age of 50 and 90 percent of men in their 70s and 80s have had some symptoms of BPH. The benign growth occurs when old cells do not die (as they once did) while new cells continue to grow. This accumulation of cells thicke...
Radiation Therapy Radiation therapy may be used as an initial treatment for localized prostate cancer. It may also be used as treatment for cancer that has not been fully removed or has recurred after surgery. In advanced cancer, radiation therapy is used to shrink the size of the tumor and relieve symptoms. Radiation therapy used to be reserved for older men (over age 70) with locally advanced prostate cancer who had a life expectancy of 15 years or less. However, it is now being used more frequently in younger and healthier men. The two main radiation treatments for prostate cancer are: External beam radiation Brachytherapy (internal radiation) Both treatments have generally equal success rates. In some cases, both techniques may be used in high-risk patients. External Beam Radiation In external beam radiation therapy, a doctor focuses a beam of radiation directly on the tumor for 35 three-minute treatments given five times a week over 7 weeks. Three-dimensional (3-D) conformal techniques u...
BPH; Benign prostatic hypertrophy (hyperplasia); Prostate - enlarged
The choice of a treatment is based on the severity of your symptoms, the extent to which they affect your daily life, and the presence of any other medical conditions. Treatment options include "watchful waiting," lifestyle changes, medication, or surgery.
If you are over 60, you are more likely to have symptoms. But many men with an enlarged prostate have only minor symptoms. Self-care steps are often enough to make you feel better.
If you have BPH, you should have a yearly exam to monitor the progression of your symptoms and determine if any changes in treatment are necessary.
For mild symptoms:
Urinate when you first get the urge. Also, go to the bathroom when you have the chance, even if you don't feel a need to urinate.
Avoid alcohol and caffeine, especially after dinner.
Don't drink a lot of fluid all at once. Spread out flui...
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