What is benign prostate enlargement / LUTS?
Lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) relate to the lower urinary tract; consisting of the bladder, the prostate and urethra. One of the conditions which can display LUTS is benign prostate enlargement, also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia.
LUTS is a broad group of symptoms that relate to the storage or passing of urine. There are several possible causes of LUTS. Aside from benign prostate enlargement, LUTS can be caused by prostatitis, a urinary tract infection, or an overactive bladder that is caused by an underlying medical condition such as obesity, diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea and high blood pressure.
Symptoms of benign prostate enlargement
Benign prostate enlargement is a common condition among older men. Symptoms, which typically get worse over time, include; needing to urinate frequently; needing to urinate urgently; needing to urinate more at night; a weak urine stream; an intermittent urine stream; finding it hard to start urinating; not being able to empty the bladder fully, and dribbling after urination.
Rarer symptoms include not being able to urinate, getting a urinary tract infection, and the presence of blood in the urine.
Causes of benign prostate enlargement
The urethra (the tube that transports urine from the bladder through the penis) goes through the centre of the prostate gland, which is located beneath the bladder. The enlargement of the prostate can have the effect of blocking the flow of urine. While it is uncertain exactly what makes the prostate enlarge - sex hormone changes may play a part - this growth usually happens throughout life.
You are understood to have a higher risk of benign prostate enlargement if; you are over 40; you have a blood relative with prostate problems; you are obese, or you have diabetes or heart disease.
Treatment options for benign prostate enlargement
As well as asking questions about your symptoms, a doctor may also use the following methods of diagnosis: A urine test, a digital rectal examination, a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test and a blood test. After these investigations, additional tests may include a postvoid residual volume test, compiling a 24-hour voiding diary, a transrectal ultrasound, a urinary flow test, a cystoscopy, a prostate biopsy, and pressure-flow studies.
The type of treatment which is recommended for your benign prostate enlargement is likely to depend on your age, your prostate size, the state of your health, and the level of discomfort you are feeling.
Medication which can be prescribed includes; alpha-blockers, 5-alpha reductase inhibitors, Cialis or combination drug therapy.
If you have symptoms classed as moderate to severe, and medication has proven ineffective, minimally invasive surgery could be recommended. These procedures include; transurethral incision of the prostate, to ease the flow of urine through the urethra; transurethral resection of the prostate, to strengthen the urine flow; transurethral needle ablation, which is used in a small number of cases to destroy excess prostate tissue causing a blockage; transurethral microwave thermotherapy, which shrinks the prostate by destroying the inner part of the enlarged prostate gland; laser therapy for the removal or destruction of overgrown prostate tissue; prostatic urethral lift; REZUM or embolisation.
State-of-the-art treatments and investigations
Mr Kaba performs a wide range of cutting-edge, advanced urology treatments. He is skilled in minimally invasive procedures, offering more options to patients in their treatment of urologic disease.