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Symptoms and Causes of Prostatitis

Prostatitis is a condition of the prostate gland usually accompanied by inflammation. This condition often causes difficult or painful urination, and pain in the groin, genitals, or pelvic area. Bacterial infections cause some but not all cases of Prostatitis. The prostate gland is about the size of a walnut located below the bladder in men. It surrounds the top portion of the tube that drains urine from the bladder.

What are the symptoms of Prostatitis?

Symptoms of Prostatitis depend on the type of disorder. They may include:

  • Difficulty urinating
  • Frequent urination especially at night 
  • Pain or burning sensation when urinating 
  • Cloudy urine
  • Blood in the urine
  • Urgent need to urinate
  • Pain or discomfort of the penis or testicles
  • Painful ejaculation
  • Pain in the abdomen, groin, or lower back
  • Pain in the area between the scrotum and rectum 
  • Chills
  • Fever
  • Muscle aches or flu-like symptoms 

Causes of Prostatitis vary depending on their type:

What causes Prostatitis?

  • Acute bacterial prostatitis: This is usually caused by common strains of bacteria and may have spread from other parts of the urinary or reproductive systems. 
  • Chronic bacterial prostatitis: This generally has the same cause as acute bacterial infection and may occur when treatment for an acute infection fails to kill all the bacteria.
  • Chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome: Research suggests that there are various factors may collectively play a role. These include previous infection, immune system dysfunction, nervous system dysfunction, irregular hormone activity, or psychological stress.
  • Asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis: This is generally found only during an exam for other medical conditions and is not treated. 

Who is at risk of having Prostatitis?

Risk factors for prostatitis include:

  • Having a history of prostatitis
  • HIV infection or AIDS
  • Young or middle-aged adulthood
  • Infection of the urinary or reproductive system
  • Use of a tube inserted into the urethra to drain the bladder 
  • A diagnostic sampling of prostate tissue
  • Psychological stress
  • Nerve damage in the pelvic region due to surgery or trauma

How to diagnose Prostatitis?

The symptoms of Prostatitis can be caused by various conditions. Your doctor will conduct a physical exam, review your symptoms and medical history, and order tests to identify the cause and rule out certain conditions. 

  • Digital rectal exam
  • Urinalysis
  • Blood test
  • Cystoscopy
  • Transrectal ultrasound

Treatment and Medication for Prostatitis

Antibiotics can kill the bacteria that cause Prostatitis. Rarely, men may also need surgery to drain an abscess on the prostate. The entire course of antibiotic treatment is usually 4 to 6 weeks or longer in some cases. Taking all the prescribed medication is important for eliminating the infection and reducing the risk of chronic bacterial prostatitis. 

Medications used for the treatment of Prostatitis and managing its symptoms:

In addition, your health care provider may recommend psychotherapy with a mental health care professional to help you manage stress, anxiety, and depression that may be associated with chronic pain. 

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