Volume III, No. 4 By Frank M. Jordan
What is the Prostate? What Does it Do?
Read an important Health Treatment Notice about personal health issues.
Prostate – A Vital Gland that can Become a Pain with Age!
The prostate gland is a vital walnut size male gland located between the bladder and penis and around the urethra at the base of the bladder. The prostate gland is an important reproductive gland, while urine leaves the body, emptying the bladder, through a tube in the prostate called the urethra.
Up to 50% of men over age 50 have Benign Prostate Hypertrophy (BPH) with 25% having an operation for the condition. Beginning about the age of 30, the prostate gland undergoes a gradual change where the inner part of the gland begins to enlarge at a very slow rate. Men are generally unaware of this change unless the growing gland presses on the bladder or uretha, causing a change in urination.
If the prostate gland becomes abnormally enlarged, free flow of urine becomes compromised and the problems of millions of men in being awakened frequently during the night with an urgent need to empty the bladder occurs. Pain, burning, frequent urination and even cancer are possibilities.
Four afflictions of the prostate gland include:
- Infection – Bacterial or Yeast
- Inflammation – Prostatitis
- Benign Enlargement (BPH)
- Prostate Cancer
Prostatitis – Inflammation of the Prostate Gland
Prostatitis is the inflammation of the prostate gland usually caused by bacteria from another area of the body, usually the urinary tract. The inflammation can cause urine retention, causing the bladder to become distended, weak, tender and also subject to infection. The three forms of prostatitis are acute infectious, chronic prostatitis and noninfectious prostatitis.
Acute prostatitis is bacterial in origin with sudden onset. Symptoms include pain between the scrotum and rectum, fever, and frequent urination with a burning sensation.
Chronic, or long term prostatitis, is also caused by bacteria, with similar symptoms often with a bladder infection.
Noninfectious prostatitis is not caused by bacteria while opinions differ on cause. Frequent urination with pain, pain after ejaculation and lower abdominal pain are common. If untreated, all forms of prostatitis can potentially lead to difficulty with urination and impotence.
Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy – BPH
Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy (BPH) is the benign, or non-cancerous, gradual enlargement of the prostate gland often making urination frequent, painful and difficult. Men with benign prostatic hypertrophy can have difficulties with the starting of a urinary stream, or problems with an intermittent stream.
Natural and nutritional aids can be beneficial for most, but often surgery is performed to remove excess tissue inside the prostate. Using a special tool called a cystoscope, the physician is able to visualize the prostate and remove the tissue without having to make an incision.
Many men confuse benign prostatic hyperplasia with prostate cancer, believing BPH is the beginning stages of prostate cancer. However this is not true and Prostate cancer and BPH are very different. As men grow older, from about age 30, the inner portions of the prostate gland slowly enlarge, which ultimately by the age of fifty to sixty results in benign prostatic hypertrophy.
Prostatic cancer tends not to effect the inner portion, but the outer portion of the gland. Both diseases are hard to distinguish from each other since they share some of the same symptoms and sometimes they can both exist at the same time. In fact, all four prostate problems can occur concurrently.
When a man begins to exhibit the symptoms listed, he should see a physician for an exam to determine the type of prostate problem present. The symptoms noted most commonly with prostate cancer and often other prostate problems are:
- Pain or a burning sensation when urinating
- Difficulty in urination or a weak or interrupted urine flow
- Pain in the lower back, upper thighs or pelvis which is relatively constant.
- Sleep deprivation and fatigue from being awakened during the night by frequent urination
If you notice any of these symptoms, see your doctor as soon as possible for a physical exam. If indicated, your physician may order diagnostic tests which will help distinguish benign prostatic hyperplasia or hypertrophy from prostatic carcinoma.
Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy Causes
The usual causes of Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy is inflammation of the prostate gland and excessive intake of fat. Bacteria is the primary villain and for this antibiotics are often indicated. Hormonal changes associated with aging are also a common cause. The prostate under a microscope resembles a sponge. Hormones such as testosterone, estrogen and progesterone all can affect the prostate gland.
Men who are balding frequently have an extra enzyme that converts testosterone to a more potent dihydrotestosterone or DHT, a cause of baldness in men. If DHT, high cholesterol and triglycerides are present, the combination can cause tremendous enlargement of the sponge-like prostate gland.
Yeast is still another potential cause when normal prostate health is altered by an abnormal colonization of yeast. Both yeast and bacteria can create hormone-like substances resulting in abnormal enlargement of the prostate.
Prostate Cancer (Carcinoma)
Prostate cancer is the number one cancer in men in the United States and the number two killer of men, close behind lung cancer. Approximately 165,000 men a year are diagnosed with prostate cancer and more than 35,000 die from the each year.
The rates of prostate cancer are 32% higher in black men than white men. Although prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men, it is treatable if caught early. In general, prostate cancer is a disease which is rarely seen in men in their 30’s to 40’s, but increases in frequency after the age of 55.
In fact, about 80% of all cases occur in men who are 65 or older. Prostate cancer is linked to excess testosterone, which is believed to increase with a high fat diet.
A family history of prostate problems is to be taken seriously and reported immediately to the physician of a man suspecting prostate problems.
The relative risk in men with one affected immediate family member has been estimated as twice that of an individual without a family history of prostate cancer. If there are two affected relatives then the risk is approximately five times greater than normal.
Be Safe with Screening and a Regular Exam after the Age of 40!
Since prostate cancer can be silent until it is too late, a good physical with an annual rectal exam is recommended for all men over 40. The rectal exam can readily detect prostate enlargement and in many cases prostatic cancer. Your physician may also choose to order a blood screening test, Prostate Specific Antigen or PSA, which detects an abnormal substance released by cancer cells.
Prostate Specific Antigen, PSA, is a marker which is specific to the prostate, hence its name. It is considered to be the most useful marker available for diagnosis and management of prostatic carcinoma. The use of a PSA screening test in conjunction with an annual rectal exam in men over 50 years of age has been recommended for early cancer detection.
The normal range for a PSA test is a value less than 4 mcg/L. Approximately 22% of men with elevated values in the range of 4-9.9 mcg/L may have prostatic carcinoma and when the level exceeds 10 mcg/L the percentage climbs to about 65%. However this test can be elevated by other benign conditions such as prostatic hypertrophy and inflammation.
Approximately one quarter of men with benign prostatic hypertrophy may have elevated PSA levels . The PSA value can also appear normal where prostatic carcinoma is present. For this reason the screening test cannot replace, but should be used in conjunction with, an annual rectal exam. Early detection gives the best chance for fighting the disease of prostate cancer.
Your physician may choose to do an ultrasound examination of the prostate and/or a biopsy of the prostate. The pathologist examines the cells submitted for cancer and grades the cancer if present. The grade of the cancer can be important in determining what type of treatment is chosen.
A low grade tumor is generally easier to treat and has a better remission rate than a high grade tumor which is more aggressive and has the potential to have spread to the rest of the body. Surgery and radiation are generally used when the cancer is confined to the prostate and has not spread. Hormonal therapy may be used when the disease is confined or when it has spread to other parts of the body.
Nutritional Aids to Promote Prostate Wellness
Nutritional herbs, vitamins and diet are essential in enabling the body to maintain a healthy prostate and to attempt to regain prostate health if necessary. Review the following with the primary health care provider prior to usage.
Saw palmetto reduces prostatic enlargement by lessening the amount of hormonal stimulation of the prostate gland. Inflammation, painful ejaculation, difficult urination and enuresis, or the inability to control urination, all benefit in most cases from taking Saw palmetto.
The NSC IMMUNITION Prostate Formula is recommended as a nutritional aid in promoting prostate wellness containing Saw palmetto, Pygeum Africanum, MG Glucan and Zinc of high quality. Pygeum Africanum has been used for decades in Europe as an effective aid in prostatitis and BPH. Zinc is significantly deficient in those with prostatitis, BPH and even prostate cancer but take no more than 100 mg daily. MG Glucan aids in nutritionally enhancing the immune function to fight bacterial infections or yeast, as the cause demands.
Additional nutritionally beneficial foods and supplements include a good multiple vitamin with minerals and enzymes such as NSC Gold, which includes calcium and magnesium plus copper as minerals that improve prostate function. Add Selenium with Vitamin E, also found in NSC Gold.
For BPH, Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica) with high lignen content is an anti-inflammatory agent that beneficially limits excess testosterone and estrogen production harmful to the prostate. Eat 2 ounces of raw pumpkin seeds every day as a rich source of needed zinc.
Beneficial Amino acids for the prostate gland and reducing nighttime urination, include L-Alanine, L-glutamic acid and L-glycine. Green Tea Extract with catechins acts as a potent antioxidant and free radical scavenger that inhibits DHT activity known to contribute to unwanted BPH.
Essential fatty acids as Omega 3’s are associated with prostaglandins and are seriously deficient in those with BPH and even more so in those with Prostate cancer. Take 1000 mg of Fish Oil concentrate with EPA of 180 mg and DHA of 120 mg daily in divided doses.
Aged garlic, Kyolic suggested, acts as a natural antibiotic while Bee pollen is known to help reduce an enlarged prostate. Natural progesterone – 2.5 mg daily – also recommended. Increase fluid intake with 2-3 quarts of high quality water daily.
Homeopathically, BHI Saw Palmetto Complex with Sabal serrulata for difficult urination is suggested with a confirmation by a Homeopathic Practitioner recommended.. Detox with supplemental oxygen treatments, the BHI Heel homeopathic detox kit and NSC IMMUNITION Milk Thistle with MG Beta Glucan.
Moderate exercise combined with the above regular exams, medical treatments and herbs with supplements enable most men to avoid the more serious negatives of prostate problems.
About the Author: Frank Jordan has a post-graduate degree from the University of Texas at Austin and is a co-patent holder on U.S. patents issued or in application related to the immune response in conjunction with researchers at the University of Nevada School of Medicine, Dept. of Microbiology. Frank Jordan’s most recent book is “Frankly Speaking, Vol 1” which reviews 50 different common medical conditions with thoughts and suggestions. Jordan hosted the Frank Jordan Commentaries on his national radio show heard in all 48 continental U.S. states weekdays.
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