Education & Diagnosis
An enlarged prostate, also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH, is a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate gland. BPH symptoms will present themselves when the enlarged prostate gland eventually impedes or blocks the flow of urine from the bladder through the urethra to the outside. The most common symptoms include:
- A weak or slow urine stream
- Trouble starting the flow of urine
- Starting and stopping again when urinating
- Not emptying your bladder completely
- Frequent urination
- Sudden urges to urinate
- Leaking or dribbling after you urinate
- Straining to urinate
If BPH is not treated, more serious problems such as urinary tract infections and a complete blockage of the urethra could occur which could injure the kidneys.
Testing & Treatment
A man being evaluated for an enlarged prostate will receive a physical exam, a rectal exam and have his blood drawn to measure his body’s prostate specific antigen (PSA). These steps verify whether the symptoms are the result of an enlarged prostate or could be caused by a prostate infection or prostate cancer.
Treatment is available when the symptoms of an enlarged prostate are affecting your quality of life or are so severe that they put you at risk for serious complications.
Treatment options include:
- Medications such as Alpha Blockers and 5-Alpha-Reductace Inhibitors improve urine flow, as well as relieve other symptoms by shrinking your prostate over time.
- HoLap (Holmium laser ablation of the prostate) – during this procedure a laser is passed through a scope, which is first inserted into your urethra. The laser delivers energy that is used to shrink or to remove the excess tissue that is blocking the urethra and preventing urine flow.
- Surgical Procedures - these treatments remove the enlarged portion of your prostate to make it smaller. The most common surgery to treat surgery is called a transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) in which the urologist removes the excess tissue surrounding your urethra with a traditional surgical instrument or by laser vaporization.