Nightly bathroom rounds, leakage or a constant feeling of never having fully emptied the bladder. These are common experience for men, often endured for years, and unfortunately like grey hair – a natural side effect of getting older.
Enlarged prostate, sometimes known as Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), affects nearly half of men over the age of 65 years.
What is BPH? - It is an overgrowth of cells, enlarging the prostate, which affects the passage of urine through the urethra or tube, meaning that it can be difficult to properly empty your bladder.
When urine is retained in the bladder, there is a risk of bacteria growing which can lead to infections, and you may require treatments such as intermittent self-catheterisation or drugs to enable the urine to pass normally again.
Infections - Urinary tract infection, also called UTI, is one example of such a condition. Urine infections can cause slightly odorous or cloudy urine and may be one of the first signs that your urine is not passing normally and therefore something worth discussing with your GP or nurse specialist.
Sometimes, though not very often, urine may flow back up to your kidneys. Left untreated it can lead to other conditions, such as kidney infection or renal failure.
See a doctor - Symptoms from the urinary system can create much anxiety and a simple check-up can restore peace of mind, and also provide a solution.
Your doctor will want to understand how ‘impactful’ your symptoms are on your life as well as assessing whether other conditions, such as hypertension (raised blood pressure) or diabetes, are causing your urinary problems.
BPH SYMPTOMS - Some of the following symptoms might suggest you have an enlarged prostate:
- Weak urine flow
- You need to strain in order to pass urine
- Going to the toilet often
- Sometimes having to get up at night to go to the toilette
- Feeling that you still need to pass urine after you have urinated
- You spend a long time in the toilette waiting for your bladder to empty
Your GP may have chosen to refer you to a hospital specialist if:
- Your symptoms have appeared suddenly or are more severe
- You regularly have urinary tract infections
- You have passed blood in your urine
- Blood tests indicate there is an abnormality needing investigation
- Your GP suspects that you may have a bladder stone
For more information on BPH and it's symptoms, we have created a helpful guide. Please click below to download your copy.