BPH Specialist in Tyler, TX
It is believed that Benjamin Franklin originally coined the phrase: “The only things in life that are certain are death and taxes.” Well, if you’re asking about BPH and how to prevent it, there are certain things we can’t control, like our age and our family. We are kind of stuck with both of those realities, and when it comes to BPH, they play a significant role. Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), or an enlarged prostate, is common and diagnosed in about half of men after the age of 60.
Dr. Clay Williams at UT Health East Texas Urology Tyler has years of experience treating BPH using nonsurgical and surgical methods, including today’s most advanced treatment options. If you have difficulty urinating or you frequently wake during the night to visit the bathroom, call the office in Tyler, Texas, or request an appointment online today.
What is BPH?
Benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH, is a condition that occurs as men age. The prostate gland surrounds part of the urethra, which carries urine and semen, and it is about the size of a walnut. The prostate doubles in size during a man’s teens, and then begins to grow again at about age 25 all they through adulthood.
If the prostate gets too big, it can squeeze the urethra and trigger urinary issues. Approximately 50% of men have an enlarged prostate by age 50, and 90% of men have an enlarged prostate by the time they reach age 80.
What are Risk Factors Affecting BPH?
Obviously, a man’s age has an effect on his prostate. Family history can also play a significant role in the development of BPH.
If a man’s father or brothers have had an enlarged prostate, there is a higher risk that he will develop the same issue. In addition, white and black men have a higher risk of experiencing BPH problems compared to Asian men.
What are the Symptoms of BPH?
When the prostate gets enlarged, it begins to put pressure on the bladder and urethra. A lot of the symptoms of BPH tend to relate to urination. Here are the 7 most commons symptoms:
- Difficulty starting urination. The enlarged prostate messes with the pressure of your bladder to pass urine. This can have damaging effects on your kidneys.
- Weak urine stream. As the urethra becomes constrained, urine passes at a much slower rate.
- Urgent need to urinate. You may go from not needing to urinate to suddenly needing to go because of how the bladder gets constrained.
- Issues with sleeping. Pressure from the enlarged prostate can mess with nerve signaling in the middle of the night. This leads to you thinking you have to urinate when you don’t.
- Feeling the inability to completely empty your bladder. You may not be able to completely empty your bladder which can lead to UTI and stone issues.
- Urinary tract infection. This is caused by the urine that sits in your bladder which you can’t fully empty, creating an environment for bacteria to thrive.
- Bladder stones. The leftover urine can also crystallize to create bladder stones.
How is an enlarged prostate diagnosed?
During your physical examination, Dr. Williams performs a digital rectal exam at his office to assess the size and shape of your prostate.
He may also administer a urinalysis, blood tests, and other specialized tests, depending on the results of your exam. For example, Dr. Williams may do a diagnostic ultrasound or perform urodynamic studies to evaluate the functioning of your bladder and urethra.
Treatment for Enlarged Prostate (BPH)
Enlarged Prostatic Hyperplasia, or BPH, is a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate gland that affects more than 50 percent of men over the age of 60. When it occurs the prostate gland presses against and narrows the urethra making it difficult to urinate. Depending on the symptoms or the severity of one’s benign prostatic hyperplasia, Dr. Williams will prescribe a number of treatment alternatives.
Drug therapy is often used to provide relief from symptoms and to help reduce the enlargement of the prostate gland. These are especially helpful where the symptoms are mild. There may be side effects and the drugs must be taken regularly for the rest of one’s life. Additionally, the drugs may lose their effectiveness over time.
The use of surgical intervention is recommended to relieve or eliminate symptoms and when symptoms are severe or other options haven’t worked. Procedures include:
TURP (Transurethral resection of the prostate) the most common type of BPH surgery that generally provides long-term relief. Side effects can include erectile dysfunction and bleeding.
Prostatectomy – performed to remove large amounts of prostate tissue. This procedure is performed in a hospital and under general anesthesia. As with medication, there can be side effects that most notably can include erectile dysfunction or incontinence.
Minimally Invasive Treatments – by their nature, these treatments are not as invasive as surgery and can be performed in an outpatient environment. These can include:
- Rezūm – Rezūm is a treatment for BPH that can be performed in a clinic or out-patient setting. Rezūm uses the stored thermal energy in water vapor (steam) to treat the extra prostate tissue that is causing symptoms such as frequency, urgency, irregular flow, weak stream, straining and getting up at night to urinate.
- Thermography – for treating patients with moderate symptoms. This treatment uses heat to destroy prostate tissue. Microwave energy is a major approach for this treatment.
- Laser Therapy – to treat mild to severe symptoms. This approach most commonly uses GreenLight Laser Therapy together with TURP to provide effectiveness with fewer side effects.
- Urethral Stent – for use with patients who are not candidates for surgery. It involves placing a mesh tube to hold the urethra open at the point where it is obstructed by the prostate gland.
Schedule Your Visit for BPH at Our Office in Tyler
Common symptoms of BPH include dribbling after urinating, frequent urination of more than 8 times a day, finding it difficult to start and stop urination, waking up to urinate at night, and a weak stream.
Don’t wait to seek treatment. It’s time to see Dr. Clay Williams immediately if you become incontinent and cannot control urination, experience pain or a burning sensation when urinating, or discover blood in the urine.