Know the basics
What is prostatitis?
Prostatitis is swelling and inflammation of the prostate gland. Depending on the cause, prostatitis may come on gradually or suddenly. There are 3 type of prostatitis:
- Acute bacterial prostatitis: a bacterial infection that causes inflammation of the prostate.
- Chronic bacterial prostatitis: a re-current bacterial infection that causes inflammation of the prostate and frequent urinary tract infections (UTIs).
- Nonbacterial prostatitis: Inflammation of the prostate that is not caused by bacteria.
Depending on the cause, prostatitis can sometimes can resolve on its own but may need medical attention for proper treatment.
How common is prostatitis?
Prostatitis affects men of all ages but tends to be more common in men 50 years of age or younger. You can minimized the chance of having hernias by reducing your risk factors. Please discuss with your doctor for further information.
Know the symptoms
What are the symptoms of prostatitis?
Common prostatitis symptoms may include:
- Pain or burning sensation when urinating (dysuria);
- Difficulty urinating, such as dribbling or hesitant urination;
- Frequent urination, particularly at night (nocturia);
- Urgent need to urinate;
- Pain in the abdomen, groin or lower back;
- Pain in the area between the scrotum and rectum (perineum);
- Pain or discomfort of the penis or testicles;
- Pain during sex;
- Flu-like symptoms (with bacterial prostatitis).
There may be some symptoms not listed above. If you have any concerns about a symptom, please consult your doctor.
When should I see my doctor?
If you have any signs or symptoms listed above or have any questions, please consult with your doctor. Everyone’s body acts differently. It is always best to discuss with your doctor what is best for your situation.
Know the causes
What causes prostatitis?
Depending on the types, there are different causes of prostatitis. Bacterial prostatitis often caused by E. coli bacterial infection. If bacteria aren’t eliminated with antibiotics because they “hide” in the prostate, prostatitis may recur or be difficult to treat. This is called chronic bacterial prostatitis. Besides, other causes of prostatitis include:
- Immune system disorder;
- Nervous system disorder;
- Injury to the prostate or prostate area;
- Some sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) can cause bacterial prostatitis. These include chlamydia and gonorrhea.
Know the risk factors
What increases my risk for prostatitis?
Risk factors for prostatitis include:
- Being a young or middle-aged man;
- Having a past episode of prostatitis;
- Having an infection in the bladder or the tube that transports semen and urine to the penis (urethra);
- Having a pelvic trauma, such as injury from bicycling or horseback riding;
- Not drinking enough fluids (dehydration);
- Having unprotected sexual intercourse;
- Having HIV/AIDS;
- Being under stress.
Not having risk factors does not mean you cannot get prostatitis. These factors are for reference only. You should consult your doctor for more details.
Understand the diagnosis & treatment
The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. ALWAYS consult with your doctor for more information.
How is prostatitis diagnosed?
The doctor can make a diagnosis from medical history and physical examination. The doctor may also do a rectal exam to provide more accurate diagnosis. In addition, other methods such as blood tests or urine tests will also be carried out when necessary.
How is prostatitis treated?
Prostatitis treatments vary depending on the underlying cause. They can include:
- Antibiotics. This is the most commonly prescribed treatment for prostatitis. Your doctor will base the choice of medication on the type of bacteria that may be causing your infection. If you have severe symptoms, you may need intravenous (IV) antibiotics. You’ll likely need to take oral antibiotics for four to six weeks but may need longer treatment for chronic or recurring prostatitis.
- Alpha blockers. This treatment may lessen symptoms, such as painful urination.
- Anti-inflammatory agents. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may make you more comfortable.
- Prostate massage.
- Take a warm bath.
Lifestyle changes & home remedies
What are some lifestyle changes or home remedies that can help me manage prostatitis?
The following lifestyles and home remedies might help you cope with prostatitis:
- Soak in a warm bath (sitz bath).
- Limit or avoid alcohol, caffeine, and spicy or acidic foods.
- Avoid prolonged sitting or try sitting on a pillow or inflatable cushion to ease pressure on the prostate.
- Avoid bicycling, or wear padded shorts and adjust your bicycle to relieve pressure on your prostate.
If you have any questions, please consult with your doctor to better understand the best solution for you.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Review Date: May 30, 2016 | Last Modified: January 4, 2017
Ferri, Fred. Ferri’s Netter Patient Advisor. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders / Elsevier, 2012. Print edition.
Prostatitis. http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases- conditions/prostatitis/basics/causes/con-20020916. Accessed August 30, 2015.Prostatitis. https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000519.htm. Accessed July 7, 2016.