Health problems inevitably begin to develop as we get older and one problem which you are very unlikely to escape if you live long enough is that of an enlarged prostate.
The problem in normally first seen in men once they pass the age of 45, although it can occasionally appear at earlier ages, and you will have about a 50 percent chance of developing an enlarged prostate by the age of 60. Once passed the age of 60 the odds of developing the condition increase substantially and, by the age of 80, your chances of suffering from an enlarged prostate will be as high as 90 percent.
The prostate gland, which sits just below the bladder and forms part of the male reproductive system, grows rapidly during puberty and by the time a man reaches maturity it weighs about one ounce and is roughly the size of a walnut. What it often not realized however is that this is not the end of its growth and the prostate gland will then continue to grow very slowly throughout the rest of a man’s life.
However, in middle age cell growth typically begins to accelerate in one particular area of the prostate gland which partially surrounds the urethra, which is responsible for carrying urine from the bladder out of the body.
Initially this accelerated growth of cells, which are non-cancerous, is still relatively slow and many men will experience no symptoms at all from it, or the symptoms will be so slight that they will be dismissed as simple a case of ‘getting older’.
In time however, as the prostate gland continues to enlarge, it will start to pinch the urethra interrupting the flow of urine from the bladder and the symptoms of the problem will begin to become evident. At first these will not be painful, or even particularly discomforting, but they will become increasingly irritating as you begin to experience difficulty in urinating, the need to get up during the night to visit the bathroom and perhaps the embarrassing tendency to continue to dribble urine even after you have visited the bathroom.
At this point, if you have not already done so as part of your routine and regular medical screening, you should consult your doctor not simply to seek treatment for your enlarged prostate but also so that you can be screened for the possibility of any underlying and developing signs of prostate cancer.