Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)
What is BPH?
Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia, or BPH, is typically a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate which leads to bothersome urinary symptoms over time. This prostate enlargement typically begins in a patient’s late 40s and can progress with age.
The diagnosis of BPH is made by a Urologist. If left untreated, BPH may progress and lead to infection, blood in the urine, stone formation in bladder, inability to urinate requiring a catheter, bladder weakening, or even kidney failure in rare cases.
What are the Symptoms?
Lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) are a consequence of an enlarging prostate over time. The rate of progression of symptoms typically varies. Common symptoms can include:
- Weak urinary flow
- Frequent or urgent need to urinate
- Waking up at night to urinate
- Difficulty starting urination
- Starting and stopping of urinary stream
- Feeling of incomplete emptying of bladder
- Dribbling after urination
What Causes BPH?
There are numerous risk factors for developing BPH over time. Some men will have a family history of the disease. Others may have medical co-morbidities such as obesity, diabetes, or heart disease that may play a role in BPH progression. Finally, normal aging and changes in sexual hormones are often involved.
When is It Time to Seek BPH Treatment?
Patients should arrange an appointment for diagnosis and treatment of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia as soon as they experience symptoms. Untreated BPH symptoms over time can cause a secondary diagnosis of Overactive Bladder, which involves worsening storage symptoms like urinary urgency, leakage of urine with urgency, and voiding frequently during day and night. If left alone for long enough, it can even start affecting the patient’s health.
The type of treatment that patients will require for BPH will depend on how far along it has developed. The earlier it is caught and addressed, the less complex and invasive the treatment will need to be. Because of this, early detection is key.
How is BPH Diagnosed?
When you speak with one of our experienced Urologists in office, a comprehensive history and physical exam will be performed as well as a review of medications that could be worsening your urinary symptoms.
The following exams will help us with recommending a treatment:
- Urinalysis. this screens your urine for infection cells, microscopic blood, and glucose.
- Digital Rectal Exam. A finger inserted into the rectum is needed to rule out any cancerous nodules and to also estimate the size of the prostate gland.
- Urinary Symptom Score. This is a simple questionnaire that quantifies the severity of your symptoms and helps guide treatment.
- PSA. A PSA, or Prostatic Specific Antigen, is a blood test ordered to rule out prostate cancer.
- Voiding Flow Rate. A machine in the office will help measure the force of your stream and amount of urine voided. This can be used before and after treatments to gauge improvement.
- Post-Void Residual. A portable ultrasound can “scan” your bladder after you void to determine if you are not completely emptying due to prostate obstruction.
- Transrectal Ultrasound. An ultrasound done in office that can measure prostate volume and rule out any possibly cancerous lesions in the prostate.
- Cystoscopy. A small flexible telescope is inserted into the urethra to evaluate the degree of obstructed prostate, as well as the bladder. This procedure typically takes less than 2 minutes to perform.
How is BPH Treated?
There are multiple options to treat the disease, including behavioral modification, medications, minimally invasive in-office procedures, and surgery. These options will be discussed with you during your consultation at HTX Urology.
We regularly perform minimally invasive BPH treatment with modalities like Greenlight laser therapy, Rezūm, and The UroLift System. Greenlight laser therapy uses laser energy to vaporize prostate tissue that obstructs the urethra. Rezūm utilizes thermotherapy to address obstructing tissue in the urinary channel. The UroLift System places tiny implants to lift prostate tissue, alleviating urethral blockage.
When surgical intervention is required, we can perform Transurethral Resection of Prostate (TURP). During this procedure, a tool called a resectoscope is inserted into the urethra. Another tool is inserted through the resectoscope, heated with electric current, and used to precisely remove prostate tissue.
Other procedures that are often utilized to address BPH include Robotic Simple Prostatectomy and Prostatic Artery Embolization.
Learn More Today
To find out more about treatment options for Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia in Clear Lake, Texas, patients can contact HTX Urology. We will be happy to schedule an informative consultation and diagnose your condition.