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5 Encouraging Facts About an Enlarged Prostate

Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Despite the first word, the condition can sound a little ominous. Even in layman’s terms — enlarged prostate — you wonder just what you’re up against.

No matter what you call it, an enlarged prostate isn’t always the harbinger of bad news. To shed some light on this issue, leading men’s health and urology expert Dr. Robert J. Cornell and our team explore why BPH isn’t necessarily cause for great concern.

1. Prostates grow

Your prostate is a gland that produces semen to carry your sperm, and the gland encircles your urethra. During puberty, this gland goes through its first growth spurt when it doubles in size. Then, after the age of 25, your prostate continues to grow, albeit far more slowly than during puberty.

So, for most of your life, your prostate is growing larger, making an enlarged prostate more of an inevitably than a condition.

2. The growth isn’t cancerous

As we already mentioned, many people gloss over the first word in BPH, and it’s an important one. The growth in your prostate is benign tissue, which means it’s not cancerous. Going a step further, having an enlarged prostate doesn't raise your risk for developing prostate cancer.

3. Symptoms don't always develop

There are plenty of men who have enlarged prostates, but they're none the wiser as there are no symptoms. Only one quarter of men experience BPH symptoms by the age of 55 and about half by the age of 75.

These symptoms include:

In severe cases, urinary infections and blockage can develop.

4. An enlarged prostate doesn't always need treatment

If your enlarged prostate doesn’t present any symptoms, we leave well enough alone, and you don’t need any treatment. Even if you do develop symptoms, such as more frequent urination, the side effect may not warrant treatment.

By the age of 80, up to 30% of men experience symptoms that are severe enough to require treatment. These severe symptoms usually include urinary tract infections and the dangerous blockages that we mentioned earlier.

5. There are solutions

If you do develop symptoms that you’d like us to remedy, we offer some effective treatment options, including:

With this last option, we remove excess prostate tissue.

While you might not find anything encouraging about an enlarged prostate, we hope you come away with a more optimistic view of this common condition.

If you have more questions about BPH and whether you can benefit from treatment, please contact our office in Houston, Texas, to schedule an appointment.

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