Prostate-related diseases can appear at any stage of life, the main ones being prostate cancer, prostatitis and benign prostatic hyperplasia.
Prostate enlargement is the most common alteration, and cancer is the most serious situation, being more frequent in men over 50 years of age, and for this reason, it is important to have regular examinations from 45-50 years old to identify early. prostate problems and achieve healing.
What is the prostate
The prostate is a gland, the size of a walnut, present in a man’s body. This gland begins to develop, increasing in size, during adolescence, due to the action of testosterone, until it reaches its average size, which is approximately 3-4 cm at the base, 4-6 cm at the cephalo-caudal part, and 2-3 cm in the anteroposterior part.
Where the prostate is located
The prostate is located between the bladder and the pelvis of the man, being in front of the rectum, which is the final portion of the intestine, and, therefore, it is possible to feel the prostate through the digital rectal exam, performed by the doctor.
What is the prostate for
The function of the prostate in the body is to produce part of the liquid that forms the sperm, helping to feed and protect the sperm.
Most common prostate diseases
The main changes in the prostate are cancer, benign prostatic hyperplasia and prostatitis and can be caused due to genetic inheritance, hormonal changes or infections of viruses or bacteria.
1. Prostate cancer
Prostate cancer is more common in men over 50, but it can also appear earlier, especially when you have a family history of this disease.
The treatment of prostate cancer is done with surgery to remove the tumor, being necessary in some cases to remove the entire prostate. Other forms of treatment that can be used in conjunction with surgery are radiotherapy and hormone treatment to shrink the tumor and reduce the risk of the disease coming back. In addition, even after the cancer has healed, it is important to have regular tests to identify early if the tumor reappears.
2. Benign prostatic hyperplasia
Benign prostatic hyperplasia, also known as enlarged or inflamed prostate, is an enlarged prostate, but without the presence of cancer. This is the most common prostate disorder because a natural enlargement of the prostate is normal with age, but in the case of this disease, there is a greater increase than expected.
Treatment for benign prostatic hyperplasia can be done through drugs to relax the prostate muscle, hormones to decrease the size of the organ or, in the most severe cases, surgery to remove the prostate.
Prostatitis is an infection in the prostate, usually caused by infections of viruses or bacteria, and can also arise as a result of a poorly treated urinary infection. This alteration can also generate an increase in the size of this gland, but temporarily, as it decreases again after treatment.
The treatment of prostatitis is done through the use of antibiotics and medicines to reduce pain, but in some cases hospitalization may be necessary to treat the disease with medications in the vein.
Prostate Warning Signs
The symptoms of the various prostate problems are quite similar. So if you think you may have a change in your prostate, select what you are feeling and find out what your risk is:
- 1. Difficulty starting to urinateNoSim
- 2. A very weak stream of urineNoSim
- 3. Frequent desire to urinate, even at night
- 4. Feeling full bladder, even after urinating
- 5. Presence of urine drops in the underwear
- 6. Impotence or difficulty maintaining an erection
- 7. Pain when ejaculating or urinating
- 8. Presence of blood in the semen
- 9. Sudden urge to urinate
- 10. Pain in the testicles or near the anus
In the presence of these symptoms, a urologist should be sought to identify the cause of the problem and initiate appropriate treatment.
How to know if your prostate is okay
To find out if your prostate is healthy you need to do tests such as:
- Digital rectal examination: palpation of the prostate through the patient’s anus, used to assess the size and hardness of the prostate;
- PSA: it is a blood test that counts the amount of a specific prostate protein, and results with high values mean that the prostate is enlarged, which may be benign prostatic hyperplasia or cancer;
- Biopsy: exam where a small piece of the prostate is removed to be evaluated in the laboratory, identifying changes in the cells that characterize the cancer;
- Urine test: used to detect the presence of bacteria in the urine and diagnose cases of prostatitis.
These tests should be done at any age in the presence of symptoms of changes in the prostate and according to the urologist’s guidelines. However, it is important to perform the touch exam once a year after the age of 50 or after the age of 45, in cases of a family history of prostate cancer, it is important to remember that prostate cancer has great chances of cure when identified early on.