Men & Their Plumbing (BPH)

Why is it that men are so reluctant to go to the doctor to talk about their penis and urinary issues.  We must have this deep seated fear from the cave man days that lurks in our hypothalamus telling us that if we need to admit to someone that we have a penis issue……….well, than a younger, stronger cave man is going to come along and take away all that is precious to us.


Benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH) is a non-cancerous increase in the size of the prostate. Women do not have a prostate, so this is not an issue for them.  In men, the prostate grows initially through puberty and then typically stops growing until mid-life, where it begins growing again very slowly.  Even though there are different phases of prostate growth, urinary problems usually do not develop until the final growth phase of a man's life, usually after 55 or 60 years old.

The prostate is located just below where the bladder empties into the urethra.  The urethra is the tube that carries urine from the bladder, through the penis to outside the body.  As the prostate slowly grows, it pushes up against the urethra and causes any number of uncomfortable urinary symptoms.  These symptoms might include urinating much more often than usual, an urgent feeling that you need to urinate immediately, the need to get up many times during the night to urinate, and a difficult time starting a urine stream.  If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, please, tell your doctor about it. 

There are two different mechanisms of medication therapy to treat these symptoms: 

The first medication category works to help relax the muscles in the prostate and the opening of the bladder.  By doing his, the urine and flow may be increased and therefore will decrease the urinary symptoms.  The issue is, the prostate may continue to slowly grow and over time the medication may lose its effectiveness.

The second medication category is involved with the development of the prostate.  The prostate requires the conversion of testosterone to dihydroteststerone (DHT) for its continued growth.  An enzyme called 5-alpha reductase is required for this conversion.  There are a couple medications that will work to inhibit this enzyme, thus blocking the conversion of testosterone to DHT.  This process allows for the prostate to slow its growth and possibly shrink in size.

To learn about these medications, side effects, precautions, interactions and all of the other exciting information, please register to becomea member at AudibleRxTM and have full access to all of the Medication Specific Counseling SessionsTM. 

You may also be interested in a BLOG I wrote a few months back discussing Erectile Dysfunction and the medication treatment options available.  Please follow this link to visit the page.


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