Though rarely dangerous, prostatitis is unpleasant and can cause a variety of symptoms. The physicians at alta uro will be happy to assist you with an individual treatment plan tailored to your specific symptoms, so that your prostatitis will soon be a thing of the past.
What is prostatitis and what are the potential causes?
Prostatitis is an inflammation of the prostate that can be acute or chronic. Distinctions are made between the following types of prostatitis:
- Acute bacterial prostatitis
- Chronic bacterial prostatitis
- Chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS) in men (also known as chronic prostatitis)
- Asymptomatic prostatitis
Acute bacterial prostatitis is a rare and serious illness which causes fever, chills, perineal pain and difficulty urinating. Acute prostatitis is caused by bacteria.
Chronic prostatitis is far more common, affecting roughly one in three men over the course of their lives. Chronic prostatitis is caused by bacteria in only 5% of cases. The remaining 95% of patients suffer from a non-bacterial infection or pelvic pain syndrome. Symptoms often come and go in waves, with patients complaining of pain or a burning sensation that is centred in the pelvic or perineal region and can radiate out into the penis, testicles or thighs. In addition, ejaculation is often painful. Patients commonly report difficulty urinating or a burning sensation in the urethra. The causes of chronic prostatitis are unclear. In some cases, the cause is believed to be an infection with bacteria that are difficult to detect. But often there are no abnormal findings, so that the cause is presumed to be changes in the urethra or tension in the muscles of the pelvic floor.
How is prostatitis diagnosed?
Various procedures are used to diagnose prostatitis. These include palpation of the prostate, urinalysis, blood tests, and an ultrasound of the bladder and prostate. Further examinations, such as a cystoscopy, are performed if needed.
Which treatment options are available?
In cases of acute prostatitis, treatment with antibiotics is indicated. In severe cases, a hospital stay may be necessary. Anti-inflammatories and pain relievers will also be administered. If acute prostatitis results in such extensive swelling of the prostate that spontaneous urination is no longer possible, a catheter will be inserted to empty the bladder.
Treatment for chronic prostatitis depends on the underlying cause. In the case of a chronic bacterial infection, a course of antibiotics lasting several weeks is required. In the case of a non-bacterial infection or chronic pelvic pain syndrome, treating the symptoms is the most appropriate approach. Depending on the nature and severity of the symptoms, treatment may include anti-inflammatory medications, pain relievers, medications to facilitate urination, medications to relieve the urge to urinate, warm sitz baths, physical therapy to relax the muscles, herbal supplements or psychotherapy.