What is prostatitis?
Prostatitis is inflammation of the prostate gland. Because women do not have a prostate gland, it is a condition only found in men. Prostatitis is a general term for inflammation of the prostate gland - an organ about the size and shape of a walnut,
located just below the bladder in males. The prostate gland's main function is to produce semen, the fluid that helps nourish and transport sperm. An inflamed prostate can cause a variety of symptoms, including a frequent and urgent need to urinate and pain or burning when urinating (dysuria) - often accompanied by pelvic, groin or low back pain.
Prostatitis can appear in several forms. The acute form is the least common, but is also the most severe. Symptoms are often sudden, and the condition may require hospitalization. Symptoms of chronic prostatitis tend to develop more slowly and aren't as severe as those of acute prostatitis. It's not always possible to completely eliminate prostatitis, but in many cases your symptoms can be controlled. In addition to medication, treatments such as heat therapy, biofeedback and sometimes just drinking a lot of water or avoiding certain foods can provide relief.
Prostatitis may account for up to 25 percent of all office visits by young and middle-age men for complaints involving the genital and urinary systems.
More information on prostatitis
What is prostatitis? - Prostatitis is inflammation of the prostate gland characterized by perineal pain and irregular urination and (if severe) chills and fever. An inflamed prostate can cause a variety of symptoms.
What are prostatitis signs and symptoms? - Symptoms of prostatitis are nonspecific and have been known to mimic other urologic and nonurologic diseases. The signs and symptoms of prostatitis depend on the cause of the inflammation.
What are the prostatitis risk factors? - Risk factors for prostatitis include bladder outlet obstruction, diabetes mellitus, a suppressed immune system, and urethral catheterization.
What causes prostatitis? - Acute prostatitis originates in the prostate, the infection can occasionally spread from a bladder or urethral infection. Nonbacterial prostatitis may be caused by an infectious agent.
How is prostatitis diagnosed? - To examine the prostate gland, the physician will perform a digital rectal examination (DRE). The various urine specimens and prostatic fluid will be analyzed for signs of inflammation and infection.
How is prostatitis treated? - The treatment of prostatitis is based on the cause. If acute bacterial prostatitis is diagnosed, the patient will need to take antibiotics for a minimum of 14 days.
What alternative treatments are available? - Acute, chronic, or nonbacterial prostatitis are inflammatory and infectious conditions that can be treated naturally with lifestyle changes. Supplements are intended to provide nutritional support.