Prostate 101: When Should I See a Doctor?

Many individuals are unaware of what the prostate is, its function, and when to seek medical attention if they suspect they have a problem. As a result, information is the most powerful weapon you have in dealing with this aspect of men’s health.

What is Prostate?

The prostate is a walnut-shaped gland at the bottom of the bladder that covers the urethra (urinary tract). As a male age, his prostate grows larger. It generates fluid that accounts for at least 30% of semen. This fluid, which includes citric acid, calcium, and enzymes, enhances the motility or swimming ability of sperm cells as well as their capacity to proliferate.

Diseases that the Prostate Gland can contract:

1. Prostatitis

Prostatitis, or prostate inflammation, can cause fever, trouble urinating, and bladder discomfort. A male may be unable to urinate if his prostate is large. The patient’s irritation during urinating is one of the key signs of the condition.

2. Prostate Enlargement

Prostate enlargement, also known as Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), is the expansion of the prostate gland in males. Prostate enlargement is common and is present in about half of men between 51 – 60 years-old. As the prostate enlarges, it presses against the urethra (the connection between the urinary bladder to the penis), causing urinary retention and difficulty in urinating.

3. Prostate Cancer

Cancer is a disease that is caused by abnormal cell growth in our bodies. Cancer cells may form in almost any region of the body that has cells, and they can spread to other sections of the body. Prostate cancer develops when cells in the prostate glands grows abnormally. Men aged 55 years old and older are recommended to undergo regular screening through a digital rectal examination at the doctor’s clinic and a blood test called Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA).

Symptoms that may indicate that you have prostate disease:

• Painful urination

• Frequent urination

• Difficulty holding back urine

• Unable to urinate

• Presence of blood in urine

• Waking up at night to pee

• Poor urine flow

• Pain or stiffness of the lower back, hips, pelvis or thighs

Consult with a Doctor:

Consult your doctor if you are experiencing signs of prostate disease so that you can receive the proper treatment. Speak with your doctor about what you may do to reduce your chances of having prostate disease.

Furthermore, as you age, it is necessary to visit the doctor for a prostate checkup once a year.