Prostatitis is one of the most frustratingly misdiagnosed urological diseases. It is also impacts men equally across the board regardless of age, social status, race, or ethnicity. Chronic prostatitis or CP is an itching, burning, inflamed feeling that is either contained within the prostate or continues down the urethra. It affects approximately 13 percent of all men. Over two million men in the United States visit the doctor every year for prostatitis, and 50 percent of men will display some prostatitis symptoms sometime in their lives.
It is not a condition we take lightly — nor should you. Long-term prostatitis symptoms can cause significant problems with pain, urinary function, and depression. The impact of CP on patients is similar to that of patients who have experienced a heart attack, angina, or Crohn’s Disease. In other words, men with chronic prostatitis are unhappy campers.
There are four basic categories of CP.
Category I: Acute bacterial prostatitis is an acute infection of the prostate.
Category II: Chronic bacterial prostatitis is a recurrent infection of the prostate.
Category III: Chronic nonbacterial prostatitis, which is also referred to as chronic pelvic pain syndrome in men, chronic prostatitis, and prostadynia when the symptoms are mild. This category accounts for 95 percent of all prostatitis cases!
Category IV: Asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis: Patient displays no subjective symptoms, but white blood cells are found in prostate secretions or in prostate tissue during an evaluation for other disorders.
More important than the specific names or categories of prostatitis is understanding that this condition exists as a spectrum of symptoms. In some cases, the symptoms are infrequent or only under certain conditions (stress, diet, after certain activities, and so on). In other cases, the symptoms can be debilitating.
Regardless of where you fit on this spectrum, know that your condition is not a figment of your imagination, and real help exists.
If you or someone you love is experiencing prostatitis symptoms, here are 6 simple tips that can help reduce the symptoms.
- Drink 8-10 glasses of pure water every day
- Have regular sexual activity that leads to orgasm
- Limit intake of bladder irritants. (Don’t put anything in your mouth that you wouldn’t put on an open wound.)
- Spicy (peppers, curry, wasabi)
- Acidic (citrus, tomatoes, apples, pineapple)
- Carbonated beverages (sodas, energy drinks)
- Caffeine (coffee, tea, even chocolate)
- Avoid foods and activities that routinely make your prostate feel worse.
- If you ride a bicycle, invest in a prostate-friendly saddle.
- Develop your core strength (abdominal, back, butt, hip, inner thigh, and oblique muscles)
Diagnostic Tools for Prostatitis
- Medical history
- Physical exam
- AUA symptom score (AUASS)
- Urine culture
- Semen analysis
- Urine flow rates
- Post void residual (PVR) testing
- Bladder scans
- Allergy testing
At Choices in Health, we know that, in order to be successful, prostatitis treatments must be tailored to the individual patient. Our prostatitis treatments range from antibiotics for Category I & II prostatitis to physical therapy to treat the underlying issues that lead to pelvic floor dysfunction, which is so common in Category III prostatitis patients. As always, we seek to identify the source of the condition and treat that — instead of blindly throwing antibiotics at the problem, hoping that it goes away.
As Drs. David Wise and Rodney Anderson write in their groundbreaking book, A Headache in the Pelvis: “You can think of muscle-based pelvic pain as a chronic spasm or charlie horse in the pelvic floor fed by tension, pain, anxiety and protective guarding.”
All of our treatments are tailored to address the individual patient’s needs and designed to eliminate all of the issues (microbial, biomechanical, or otherwise) that prevent men from living a happy, health life. This is why we thoroughly evaluate a range of lifestyle factors such as stress, biomechanical holding patterns, diet, water intake, alcohol consumption, sexual activity, work-place ergonomics, even bicycle seats.
Our more than 60 years of collective experience in treating men with prostatitis allows us to synthesize multiple factors and design treatments for each patient based on orthodox and complementary medicine.
We look for the causes beneath the symptoms. (Why is your prostate chronically inflamed? What can we do to prevent you from ever going through this frustrating and painful experience again?) Our integrated approach to treating prostatitis involves healing the whole person and is based on a deep understanding of traditional medicine, and supported by complementary and alternative products and techniques.