Medical workup of BPH and what to expect

Medical workup of BPH and what to expect

If you’ve been finding that you need to urinate more often, especially at night, it may be more than too many liquids at bedtime. Benign prostatic hyperplasia is a glandular condition that affects most men as they pass their fifth decade. While this condition can appear in patients below this age, it’s most common later in life. Other symptoms associated with this condition include erectile dysfunction, retrograde ejaculation, and trouble emptying the bladder. If these sound like something you face, it may be time to see a specialist for diagnosis.

Getting A Diagnosis For BPH

The first stage of diagnosing benign prostatic hyperplasia is scheduling an appointment with a qualified specialist. These initial exams involve a series of steps outlined below:

  • Digital rectal exam – The doctor will check the size of your prostate by inserting a finger in your rectum.
  • Urine test – Your physician will take your urine sample for analysis. This is done to rule out infection and other potential conditions that can produce symptoms like those of BPH.
  • Blood Test – A blood test can rule out problems with your kidneys
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen Blood Test – Also known as a PSA test, this checks for elevated levels of this antigen in your system. These commonly increase when prostate enlargement is present. However, it may also be caused by prostate cancer, infection, surgery, or recent procedures.
  • Urinary Flow Test – This procedure determines if you have a regular flow rate while urinating. This test may both be done during diagnosis and throughout treatment to determine progress.
  • Postvoid Residual Volume Test – PRVT checks for how thoroughly you’re able to empty your bladder while urinating. BPH can obstruct the urethra and make it difficult to fully empty your bladder.
  • 24-Hour Voiding Diary – In some cases, it may be deemed beneficial to determine how frequently you are urinating and how much you produce over a 24-hour period.

In complex cases, additional testing may be necessary. This may include the following tests:

  • Transrectal Ultrasound – This procedure involves the insertion of an ultrasound probe into the rectum to evaluate the current condition of your prostate.
  • Prostate Biopsy – The above procedure can be used to guide needles for taking tissue samples from your prostate. This is known as a biopsy and is often done to help diagnose or rule out prostate cancer.
  • Urodynamic and Pressure Flow Studies – These studies are done to determine bladder function, especially in men with potential neurological problems. They involve the insertion of water into the bladder to measure pressure and elimination.
  • Cystoscopy – This procedure involves the insertion of a cystoscope into the urethra. This camera allows the specialist to view the state of your bladder and urethra tissue. A local anesthetic precedes this treatment.

The above represents the most frequently used methods of diagnosing benign prostatic hyperplasia and other conditions affecting the prostate. 

Reach Out To Your Specialist For Diagnosis

Schedule a consultation today if you’re experiencing symptoms related to BPH and want to determine if that’s the underlying cause. You’ll undergo a full medical workup to determine if your prostate has become enlarged. Once a diagnosis is reached, together, you can develop a treatment plan. BPH is a controllable condition, and its symptoms are often reversible, so call today!

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