When you have Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), we know that you’ll be researching ways to treat BPH. But what is this condition, what symptoms does it cause, and when should you seek medical intervention? Keep reading for all these answers and more.
What is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia?
BPH is a common condition that affects males, enlarging their prostates and causing a variety of symptoms. Now, not every affected individual will experience the same symptoms. Yet some of the more common effects of this condition involve Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms (LUTS), including:
- Urge Incontinence, or a sudden need to urinate without warning, and without the ability to control the urge
- Nocturia, when you have to wake up in the middle of the night to urinate two or more times
- Hesitancy, when you have a difficult time getting urine to start flowing
- Straining to pass urine
- Pain when urinating
- An inability to completely empty your bladder with urination
- Dribbling of urine at the end of the flow
- Frequent UTIs (Urinary Tract Infections)
- Bladder stones
- Blood in your urine
- Smaller bladder capacity (decompensation)
Causes of BPH
We don’t know exactly why men develop this condition. But we do know that your age, your testosterone levels, and changes to your testicular cells can increase your risk. In fact, most men over 40 have some degree of prostate enlargement, and close to 100% of men over the age of 80 develop this condition.
When to Treat BPH
The decision to treat an enlarged prostate will depend on how intrusive your symptoms are to your daily life. Also, the severity of symptoms will help determine your appropriate treatment plan. For some men, simple lifestyle changes, such as urinating as soon as you feel the need; limiting caffeine and alcohol intake; getting regular exercise; managing stress; and avoiding certain medications can help you manage symptoms of an enlarged prostate.
Other men, however, will need more serious interventions to relieve BPH symptoms. In the past, the best available options were prescribed medications or surgery. Today, however, there’s a new way to treat BPH, with a minimally invasive procedure known as Prostate Artery Embolization, or PAE.
PAE to Treat BPH: A New Hope for Men with LUTS
Recently, the American Urologic Association approved PAE for treating BPH. This minimally invasive, same-day, outpatient procedure can relieve BPH symptoms with minimal risks for sexual side effects or for causing incontinence. Performed with mild sedation or general anesthesia, our interventional radiologists in the greater Dallas/Fort Worth and Houston areas start PAE by inserting a small catheter into your wrist. Next, guided by X-ray technology, we can insert beads that block blood flow to the prostate, causing it to shrink within two weeks of the procedure. In turn, bothersome BPH symptoms should improve, and you may even enjoy improved sexual health.
Ready to treat BPH without surgery or added side effects? Reach out to our team today. We’ll review your symptoms and determine if PAE is your best treatment option.