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If your doctor determines you have BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia, aka enlarged prostate), there are several treatment options available. Here are some details on how to treat BPH.
Also known as watch and wait, this may be the advice your doctor gives to you once it’s been determined that you do not have another disease and that BPH is the diagnosis. If your symptoms of BPH are mild and tolerable, you and your doctor may decide that no further action is required at this time and so you’ll just wait to see if anything new develops.
Medications for BPH include alpha-blockers, which relax the muscles in the prostate and the neck of the bladder so that urine flows more easily. Another classification is 5-alpha reductase inhibitors, which slow the growth of the prostate and cause it to shrink by altering the actions of certain male hormones.
Invasive, Nonsurgical Treatment Options
If medications for BPH do not provide relief, then your doctor may recommend one of the following nonsurgical treatment procedures to keep the urethra open:
- TUNA: Transurethral needle ablation
- TUMT: Transurethral microwave thermotherapy
- PVP: Photo-selective vaporization
- TUBD: Transurethral dilation
- Prop it Open (using a stent)
Surgery for an enlarged prostate
Advances in medical technology have made surgery for BPH less common, now that clinicians can blast, vaporize, and burn away extra prostate tissue using invasive nonsurgical treatment options for BPH. But surgery for BPH is still an option for some men who may have severe symptoms that do not respond to other approaches or who have complications that make surgery a wiser choice. Surgical procedures available to deal with BPH include:
- TUIP: Transurethral incision of the prostate
- TURP: Transurethral resection of the prostate
- TVP: Transurethral vaporization of the prostate
Alternative Treatments for an enlarged prostate
Non-conventional and naturopathic treatment for BPH combine a number of alternative approaches including nutrition and supplements, exercise, lifestyle changes, hormone management and stress reduction. The purpose of this approach is to give the body and immune system the tools it needs to manage inflammation and control the hormonal actions that can cause excessive prostate growth.
Nutritional and herbal supplements have been shown to help relieve some of the symptoms of BPH. Many of the supplements that are beneficial for BPH are also helpful to prostate health in general.