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The prostate is a gland that produces the fluid that carries sperm during ejaculation. The prostate gland surrounds the urethra, the tube through which urine passes out of the body.
An enlarged prostate means the gland has grown bigger. Prostate enlargement happens to almost all men as they get older. As the gland grows, it can press on the urethra and cause urination and bladder problems.
An enlarged prostate is often called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). It is not cancer, and it does not raise your risk for prostate cancer.
CONDITIONS & CAUSES
- Diabetes (type 2)
- Chronic medical conditions (especially liver or kidney disease)
- Hormonal disorders
- Medications (narcotics, chemotherapy)
SIGNS & SYMPTOMS
- Dribbling at the end of urinating
- Inability to urinate (urinary retention)
- Incomplete emptying of your bladder
- Needing to urinate two or more times per night
- Pain with urination or bloody urine (these may indicate infection)
- Slowed or delayed start of the urinary stream
- Straining to urinate
- Strong and sudden urge to urinate
- Weak urine stream
BPH is considered a normal condition of male aging, and it’s estimated that over half of men over the age of 80 have BPH symptoms. Although the exact cause is unknown, changes in male sex hormones as you age may be a factor. Any family history of prostate problems or any abnormalities with your testicles may raise your risks for BPH. Men who’ve had their testicles removed at a young age don’t develop BPH.