Is something wrong with your prostate?
Many men with prostate related disorders or problems have no significant symptoms and the symptoms begin to “appear” only when the prostate has become significantly enlarged. The following terms will help you understand some of the main and common symptoms that you may encounter if you have any prostate-related problem or disease.
Urgency: Urgency refers to the “urgent” feeling of needing to pee immediately.
Frequency: Needing to pee often, especially at night or a short time between needing to urinate. The term “nocturnal frequency” or “nocturia” means having to get up several times (more than twice) during the night to urinate. This naturally interferes with getting a good night’s sleep.
Hesitation: Difficulty in starting to pee or straining to pee or taking a long time to finish.
Dribbling: This refers to an irregular stream of urine after urination has finished.
Urinary retention: In this symptom, not all the urine is passed from the urinary bladder causing a need to pee more often.
Overflow or urge incontinence: A symptom in which urine overflows from a full bladder uncontrollably even though normal urination cannot be started
Pain (Dysuria): Pain when peeing or during sex when you have an orgasm.
Some most severe and serious symptoms that may indicate a more serious or even a life-threatening prostate problem (such as cancer) include:
Blood in the urine or semen (Medically known as hematuria)
Impotence (Medically known as erectile dysfunction)
Pain in back, hips or pelvis
How to confirm if you if have some prostate related disorder?
History: The first step your doctor will take towards making a correct diagnosis about any prostate disoder is taking a thorough clinical history from you. This may include brief series of questions about your lifestyle, your symptoms and how much they bother you.
Physical examination: Next, your doctor will perform a detailed physical examination and the most important part of this exam is digital rectal examination (DRE).
What is DRE?
An abbreviation for a “digital rectal examination”, this examination involves exploring your prostate and its nearby area by inserting a finger (digit) into your rectum (the last part of your large intestine) through its opening known as anus. Hence, your doctor will insert a gloved, lubricated finger into your rectum in order to feel the prostate. Its size, texture and sensitivity provide important information. If you have acute prostatitis, your doctor may find that your prostate is warm, firm, swollen and exquisitely tender (painful).
Urine test (Urine D/R): To rule out bacterial infection, you will need to give a sample of urine to test for an infection. Urine detailed report is a regular urine test. They will ask you for a urine sample to test for infection. If the test results show that bacteria are present in the urine, you may have some prostate disorder or infection. If you do not have a urine infection, the doctor may need to take a sample of prostate fluid which is collected during DRE and then sent to laboratory to detect any bacteria, if present.
Cytoscopy: Another procedure called cystoscopy can also used to rule out other conditions that may be responsible for prostate-related symptoms. Working pretty much like the famous “endoscopy” procedure, cytoscopy involves insertion of a tube through the urethra into the bladder. This cystoscope is a thin, telescope-like instrument fitted with lenses and a light source and allows your doctor to see the bladder and prostate.
PSA Test: Prostate specific antigen (PSA) is a protein (an enzyme) produced by some of the cells in the prostate gland. It is normal to find some PSA in a man’s blood stream. A PSA test is a blood test that measures the amount of PSA in your blood and a raised level can suggest there is a problem with your prostate, such as prostatitis.
Finally, it is very important for you to remember that the above-mentioned symptoms are not exclusively limited to only “one” specific prostate problem and can be found in almost any of the prostate-related condition or disorder.
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