Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) also called prostate gland enlargement is a common condition as men get older. An enlarged prostate gland can cause uncomfortable urinary symptoms, such as blocking the flow of urine out of the bladder. It can also cause bladder, urinary tract, or kidney problems. BPE is common in men aged over 50. It's not cancer and it's not usually a serious threat to health.
Many men worry that having an enlarged prostate means they have an increased risk of developing prostate cancer. This is not the case If the prostate becomes enlarged, it can place pressure on the bladder and the urethra, which is the tube that urine passes through. This can affect how you pee and may cause:
Difficulty starting to pee
A frequent need to pee
Difficulty fully emptying your bladder.
Treatment for an enlarged prostate will depend on how severe your symptoms are, of which some are:
Frequent or urgent need to urinate
Increased frequency of urination at night (nocturia)
Difficulty starting urination
Weak urine stream or a stream that stops and starts
Dribbling at the end of urination
Inability to completely empty the bladder
Less common signs and symptoms include:
Urinary tract infection
Inability to urinate
Blood in the urine
If you have mild symptoms, you do not usually need immediate treatment, but you'll have regular prostate check-ups.
You'll probably also be advised to make lifestyle changes, such as:
drinking less alcohol, caffeine, and fizzy drinks.
limiting your intake of artificial sweeteners.
drinking less in the evening.
Medicine to reduce the size of the prostate and relax your bladder may be recommended to treat moderate to severe symptoms of an enlarged prostate. Surgery is usually only recommended for moderate to severe symptoms that have not responded to medicine.