Signs Your Prostate is Problematic

Prostate cancer is a common concern among older men, and for good reason: The American Cancer Society estimates that there will be about 250,000 new cases of prostate cancer diagnosed this year in the United States, along with about 35,000 prostate cancer-related deaths. In fact, prostate cancer is the second most common cancer among men, exceeded only by skin cancer.

Of course, not all prostate problems are associated with cancer. In fact, many symptoms are related to benign (non-cancerous) issues, including a relatively common problem called benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH). With three locations across Los Angeles, Essential Medical Clinic helps men learn to recognize the early signs of prostate problems, so they can get prompt medical treatment and avoid serious complications. Here’s what to look for.

Common symptoms of prostate problems

The prostate gland is located below the bladder and above the penis. When the prostate gland enlarges, it presses on the bladder, compressing it. At the same time, the growing prostate squeezes the urethra, the tube that urine travels through during urination. As a result, many symptoms associated with prostate problems have an effect on the way you urinate. For instance, many men with prostate problems have these symptoms:

In fact, an enlarged prostate is a relatively common cause of urinary incontinence among older men.

The prostate also produces some of your seminal fluid. In some cases, when the gland is enlarged, it can also interfere with normal ejaculation. Specifically, an enlarged or infected prostate can make erection and ejaculation extremely uncomfortable — even painful.

Finally, when the prostate is infected, enlarged, or affected in some way, you might develop pain or aching in your lower back, around your pelvis, around your rectum, or even in your thighs. 

Common prostate problems

If you’re having prostate-related symptoms, prostate cancer might be the first cause that jumps to mind. But other problems can cause these symptoms, too, and having a medical evaluation is really the only way to know which issue is causing your problems.

Benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH)

Benign prostate hyperplasia is very common. In fact, statistics show that by age 60, about half of all men have BPH, and by age 80, that number soars to 90%. Benign prostate hyperplasia is benign, which means it’s not cancerous, nor can it “change into” cancer. However, some men can develop both BPH and prostate cancer at the same time, which is one big reason why it’s so important to have your symptoms evaluated by our doctors.

Acute prostatitis

Prostatitis is an infection of the prostate gland, usually caused by bacteria. Like other infections, prostatitis often is accompanied by fever and chills. In most cases, it can be successfully treated with antibiotics.

Chronic prostatitis

Chronic prostatitis involves recurring infection and inflammation in the gland. It’s a relatively common cause of symptoms like pelvic pain and aching in the lower back. Medicine, lifestyle changes, and sometimes surgery can be used to correct this problem.

Prompt treatment is the key to maintaining prostate health, especially as you get older. Ignoring symptoms not only means they can become worse, but it also means the underlying problem could become worse, too. If you’re experiencing any symptoms associated with prostate problems, don’t put off your evaluation. Book an appointment online or over the phone with Essential Medical Clinic today. We also take walk-ins and offer telehealth appointments.

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