All About Prostatitis: Warning Signs, Complications, and Treatment Solutions

All About Prostatitis: Warning Signs, Complications, and Treatment Solutions

Prostatitis is an inflammatory condition that affects the prostate, a small, walnut-sized gland located just below the bladder in men. A relatively common condition, prostatitis is responsible for about 2 million doctor visits every year in the United States.

Prostatitis can be treated, and like many medical conditions, it responds best to prompt care. In this post, Alfred Shtainer, MD, FACS, offers a brief overview of prostatitis, including its symptoms, its causes, and its treatments, to help patients at Adult and Pediatric Urology get the care they need to stay healthy.

Quick facts about prostatitis

There are four primary “types” of prostatitis: acute bacterial prostatitis, chronic bacterial prostatitis, chronic pelvic pain syndrome (or CPPS), and asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis (sometimes called nonbacterial prostatitis). 

Bacterial prostatitis

Both acute and chronic bacterial prostatitis are active infections of the prostate that involve measurable amounts of bacteria. Acute bacterial prostatitis typically occurs suddenly, while the chronic form develops over time and involves inflammation lasting three months or more.

Both conditions can cause similar symptoms, including:

The acute type is sometimes associated with fever and chills or other flu-like symptoms. Like other bacterial infections, both acute bacterial prostatitis and chronic bacterial prostatitis can be managed with antibiotic therapy and supportive care.

Chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS)

The most common type of prostatitis, CPPS is not an infection, and the precise cause is unknown. Researchers believe CPPS may be related to nerve damage in the pelvic region, chemicals in the urine, or a faulty immune system response to a prior urinary tract infection. 

This type of prostatitis causes discomfort in the groin, pelvic region, lower belly, lower back, and genitals, and symptoms can last for months or even years. CPPS can also cause pain during ejaculation, weak urine stream, increased urgency, and pain during urination. Symptoms often come and go over time.

Asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis

As its name implies, this type of prostatitis doesn’t cause any symptoms. Most people discover they have asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis when it’s revealed during tests for other medical issues. Like CPPS, asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis isn’t an infection, and it typically doesn’t require medical treatment beyond a regular follow-up with Dr. Shtainer.

Treating prostatitis

Bacterial prostatitis can cause complications like bloodstream infections, abscesses, and widespread inflammation. All types of prostatitis can interfere with sexual pleasure and affect your quality of life.

Fortunately, treatments can help manage prostatitis. In addition to antibiotics used in treating the bacterial types of prostatitis, Dr. Shtainer offers an array of techniques that can help with CPPS as well. Anti-inflammatory medications, prostatic massage, and low-intensity shockwave therapy are promising treatment options that can be tailored to each man’s individual needs for optimal results. 

Prostatitis is a complex and varied condition that benefits from an individual approach to care. To find out if your symptoms are caused by prostatitis and how we can help relieve them, request an appointment online or over the phone with Dr. Shtainer and the team at Adult and Pediatric Urology today.

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