June is Men's Health Month. Some of you may asking well what does men's health month have to do with women? And the answer is lots because men's health affects both men and women. Men's Health Network says, "Because women live longer than men, they see their fathers, brothers, sons, and husbands suffer or die prematurely. Women are in a unique position to be able to help fight the obstacles men face in getting the health care they need."
Enlarged prostate, or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), is a common occurrence among aging men. There are approximately 19 million men with symptomatic BPH, 14 million of whom are undiagnosed and 2 million of whom are diagnosed but untreated. A study in the Journal of Urology found that 50% of men experience symptoms of an enlarged prostate by age 60 and 90% of men will report symptoms by age 85.
The prostate gland is located below the bladder and is where the bladder connects to the urethra, a tube inside the penis that carries urine and semen out of the body. It courses through the prostate and the penis. If the prostate becomes too enlarged it can squeeze the urethra, which could block the natural flow of urine. The blockage can also occur to the flow of semen from the attached glands that store semen. This obstruction of urine and semen may lead to a number of irritating symptoms and if untreated could also cause more serious problems.
The most common symptoms associated with BPH are:
- Inability to completely void
- Weak urine stream