More on the Biggest Health Concern Facing Men

The prostate causes a number of major health concerns for men as they age. If you or your loved one hasn’t been to the doctor since childhood, there’s a good chance you want to get a prostate examination.

Prostate health becomes a focal point of concern after age 40. More than 30 million men suffer from some sort of prostate problem that can greatly affect their quality of life. The three areas of most concern are an enlarged prostate, prostate cancer, and prostatitis.

Your prostate is a small gland about the size of a walnut that’s responsible for producing fluid for semen. It surrounds your urethra and, for the most part, remained unchanged since you went through puberty. However, once you turn 40, it starts to grow and can cause disease.

The three major prostate diseases most men will face are an enlarged prostate, prostate cancer, and prostatitis.

Benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH, is the medical term for an enlarged prostate. It’s the most common health problem amongst men, affecting half the male population between 50 and 60. By age 80, roughly 90% of men will have experienced symptoms of an enlarged prostate. When the prostate grows too much it begins to put pressure on the urethra causing discomfort. It can be treated with drugs if needed and the symptoms include frequent urination, incomplete emptying of the bladder, difficult starting urination, and a weak urine stream.

Although not as serious as prostate cancer, prostatitis can create extreme discomfort and is very common in men under 50. In fact, more than half of all men will be treated for one form of prostatitis in their lives. The three forms are bacterial, nonbacterial, and prostatodynia.

Bacterial prostatitis affects one in 10 men (with prostatitis) and is treated with antibiotics. The symptoms hit hard and are easily diagnosed. They don’t affect the area directly surrounding the prostate like other prostate illnesses, so be on the lookout for fevers, chills, lower back pain, sore muscles, fatigue, and frequent or painful urination.

Nonbacterial prostatitis is the most common form of prostatitis and affects six in 10 men with the condition. It results in inflammation caused by substances in the urine, or in men who have allergies or asthma. Symptoms include occasional discomfort in the lower back, abdomen, testicles and urethra; discharge from the urethra; blood or urine in your discharge; frequent urination; and sexual difficulties.

Finally, prostatodynia affects three in 10 men with an irritated prostate. It essentially causes a great deal of pain in the prostate gland and surrounding area and can cause difficulty urinating. You’re more at risk of contracting prostatodynia if you:

· Have had a recent bladder infection

· Have BPH

· Have gonorrhea, chlamydia, or another STD.

· Have frequent unprotected sex with multiple partners

· Drink heavily

· Eat a lot of spicy or marinated foods

· Have a pelvis injury.

Prostate cancer shares symptoms with BPH, but is also defined by chronic pain in the hips and blood in urine or semen. Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men, and the second leading killer in men, after lung cancer. But there is a lot of controversy surrounding prostate screening. According to the recommendations of the American College of Physicians, getting screened when you don’t have to poses a serious risk, because of the high false-positive and false-negative test rates, over-diagnosis, unnecessary biopsies, complications (such as urinary incontinence and sexual dysfunction, common after PSA screening), and unnecessary treatments, considering a significant number of men live with prostate cancer.

There are some preventative measures you can take to reduce your risk of contracting prostate cancer, such as:

Eating a diet low in fat and high in fibrous food.

Watching your weight. Obesity is a contributing factor to the disease.

Exercising regularly

Abstaining from smoking

Drinking water to flush bladder. Your urine should be almost clear.

Having regular sex because the best way to empty the prostate is by ejaculating.

As you age, your prostate is going to grow-that’s a fact.

But by taking these preventative measures, and getting screened if you’re more at-risk, you can decrease your likelihood of contracting prostate

Source for Story:

Doctors Health Press [e-bulletin@doctorshealthpress.com]

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