Prostate Care

Expert men’s health care for prostate conditions

Prostate Care at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Needham

The prostate gland — located between the penis and bladder — secretes fluid that nourishes and protects sperm. About the size of a walnut in a young man, the prostate slowly grows larger with age. If it grows too large, which is a common occurrence after age 50, it can cause problems.

Urology specialists at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital–Needham treat a range of prostate-related problems:

Enlarged Prostate

If they live long enough, most men will develop benign prostatic hyperplasia, or an enlarged prostate. In fact, nearly 90% of all men show signs of prostate enlargement by age 80. As the prostate gland grows, it can put pressure on the urethra (the tube connected to the bladder that transports urine from the body). This can lead to urinary and bladder problems.

Symptoms of Enlarged Prostate

Fewer than half of men with an enlarged prostate have symptoms. When they do experience symptoms, they may include:

  • Dribbling at the end of urinating
  • Inability to urinate
  • Incomplete emptying of the bladder
  • Incontinence
  • Painful or bloody urination
  • Straining to urinate
  • Sudden urge to urinate
Causes of Enlarged Prostate

The actual cause of benign prostatic hyperplasia is unknown. Other than normal functioning testicles and age, there are no other known risk factors. Men who have had their testicles removed — such as due to testicular cancer — don't develop an enlarged prostate.

Diagnosis of Enlarged Prostate

Your urologist will use one or more of these tests to diagnose an enlarged prostate:

  • Digital rectal exam (DRE) to feel the size of the prostate
  • Post-void residual test to see how much urine is left in the bladder after urinating
  • Tests to measure pressure in the bladder
  • Urine flow rate test
Treatment of Enlarged Prostate

Treatment for an enlarged prostate depends on the symptoms and can include:

  • Medication: Blood pressure medications to relax the muscles of the bladder neck and prostate, or finasteride (Propecia, Proscar) to decrease the level of hormones produced by the prostate, reduce its size and increase urine flow.
  • Antibiotics: To treat prostate inflammation (prostatitis).
  • Surgery: Removal of the entire prostate if you have incontinence, recurrent blood in the urine, urinary retention, recurrent infection or kidney failure.

Services & Specialties

We offer these and other services to support your urological needs.

Make an Appointment

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