Prostatitis

Hommes à risque de prostatite discutant autour en mangeant

Overview

Discussion entre un urologue et un homme sur les traitements du cancer de la prostateProstatitis is a painful inflammation of your prostate. During their lifetime, 50% of men will have a form of prostatitis. It is a condition that can affect men of all ages. Prostatitis is caused by the inflammation or infection of the prostate. It can be caused by different bacteria – from a urinary tract infection, a sexually transmitted infection or catheterization as examples – and lead to acute or chronic prostatitis. It can also be of chronic type, without the presence of bacteria.

Acute prostatitis is accompanied by high fever, chills and general malaise; it is urgent to consult to avoid long-term complications.

Prostatitis is not a form of prostate cancer nor does it increase the risk of developing prostate cancer.

There are four types of prostatitis

Illustration d’une prostatite

Chronic pelvic pain syndrome

This is the most common type of prostatitis. This condition primarily causes pelvic pain, but other symptoms may also occur. Although the causes for chronic pelvic pain syndrome are not well understood, it is not caused by a bacterial infection. This type of prostatitis may persist intermittently for some time and occurs mostly in younger men. Some studies show a link between higher stress levels and the onset or amplification of chronic pelvic pain syndrome symptoms.

Acute bacterial prostatitis

This is a bacterial infection of the prostate. Bacteria can also spread to your prostate from your bladder, intestines, or blood stream. Symptoms can develop quickly and this condition can be very serious and may require hospitalization with intravenous antibiotic therapy. Symptoms associated with acute bacterial prostatitis include fever and pain in the thighs, lower back, and pelvic region. There may also be a complete inability to urinate (acute urinary retention). This condition can be caused by a urinary infection, a biopsy, or the use of a catheter.

Chronic bacterial prostatitis

This is an infection caused by bacteria that can last for more than three months. Symptoms vary with time and are not as serious as acute bacterial prostatitis. Chronic bacterial prostatitis can develop from a bacterial infection when bacteria remain in the prostatic region. Men having previously suffered from a urinary infection or inflammation of the urethra are more at risk of developing this type of prostatitis.

Non-bacterial prostatitis or asymptomatic prostatitis

This type of prostatitis causes an inflammation of the prostate. This type of prostatitis does not cause any symptoms and is generally detected by chancewith a prostate biopsy. Causes are unknown.

Risk factors associated with prostatitis

  • Unprotected sex
  • An enlarged prostate
  • A trauma, prostate biopsy, or prostate surgery
  • Bladder outflow obstruction
  • Passage of a catheter or cytoscope into the urethra

Symptoms

Prostatitis can cause a wide range of symptoms that can differ from man to man.

The most common signs and symptoms

  • More frequent urination (urinary frequency), especially at night
  • A strong or sudden urge to urinate (urinary urgency)
  • Difficulty starting or stopping the urine stream (called straining)
  • Weak or slow urine stream
  • Interrupted urine flow
  • Being unable to empty the bladder completely
  • Difficulty controlling the bladder (leaks)
  • Pain or a burning sensation during urination
  • Difficult or painful ejaculation
  • Blood in the urine or semen (rare)
  • Pain in the pelvis area (genitals, groin, lower abdomen or lower back)
  • Fever and chills if prostatitis is acute
  • Recurrent urinary tract infections

Diagnosis

If you notice any unusual symptoms or if the doctor suspects you of having this condition, the doctor may suggest you undergo certain tests. These tests vary depending on the type of prostatitis, but may include the following:

  • A rectal examination to ascertain sensitivity and size of the prostate
  • An abdominal examination
  • A urine test and culture of bacteria found in the urine
  • A blood test and a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test
  • Imaging using ultrasound or X-ray

Treatments

Homme devant ses médicaments pour traiter son cancer de la prostateTreatments are dependent on the prostatitis diagnosis and may vary from one man to another.

Treatments for prostatitis

  • Antibiotics: to treat bacterial infections
  • Intravenous antibiotics: to treat acute bacterial infections
  • Pain medication
  • Muscle relaxants: to reduce bladder contraction. They can decrease urine leakage and the urgent need to urinate.
  • Alpha-adrenergic blockers: to relax muscles around the prostate, to relieve pressure on the urethra, and reduce symptoms affecting urine flow. They are fast-acting (24-72 hours) on urinary symptoms.
  • 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors: to reduce the size of the prostate if urinary disorders stem from prostatitis linked to BPH (enlarged prostate).
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Transurethral resection of the prostate to drain an abscess

Helpful lifestyle changes

  • Drink plenty of water
  • Avoid alcohol, soft drinks, and drinks containing caffeine, such as tea and coffee, that can irritate your bladder and make symptoms worse
  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Sit comfortably if you need to sit for a long period of time
  • Be active, it can reduce pain
  • Avoid cycling or any other activities that put pressure on the perineum as it can make symptoms worse
  • Do pelvic floor muscle exercises: these muscles help control urination. Doing these exercises strengthen your muscles and help to reduce urinary symptoms.

Supportive treatments to help relieve symptoms

There is no scientific evidence regarding the effectiveness of these methods in relieving symptoms, but many men did notice an improvement in their conditions.

  • Prostate stimulation by a doctor
  • Antidepressants
  • Medication for sexual problems (medication for erection troubles)

Complementary therapies and relaxation techniques

These therapies can have a positive effect on your well-being

  • Acupuncture
  • Massotherapy
  • Reflexology
  • Aromatherapy
  • Hypnotherapy

Relaxation techniques

Relaxation techniques may help you relax and feel more comfortable

  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Deep breathing
  • Warm baths

We are here for you

You have questions or concerns? Don’t hesitate. Contact us at 1 855 899-2873 to discuss with one of our nurses specialized in uro-oncology. They are there to listen, support and answer your questions, those of your family or your loved ones. It’s simple and free, like all of our other services.

Also take the time to visit each of our pages on this website, as well as our YouTube channel, in order to get familiar with the disease, our expert lectures and webinars, our section on available resources, the support that is offered to you, our events and ways to get involve to advance the cause.

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Sources and references

Last medical and editorial review: July 2019
Written by PROCURE. © All rights reserved – 2019
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