Enlarged Prostate And Sex Drive
Although we cant say for certain that an enlarged prostate will cause erectile dysfunction or problems ejaculating, there is plenty of evidence that the condition can and does impact the sex lives of those who experience it. BPH can affect your sex drive , because you might feel generally stressed or anxious about your symptoms.
If you feel that your prostate is impacting your sex life, you should talk to your doctor.
Can A Swollen Prostate Cause Erectile Dysfunction
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Erectile dysfunction can affect your ability to get and maintain an erection.
It is a very common condition around 322 million men globally by 2025 are projected to experience persistent difficulty achieving and sustaining erections.
This condition may be caused by psychological factors like performance anxiety or stress.
Likewise, your medication for managing high blood pressure or ulcers or other conditions could also affect erectile functioning.
Well be examining how a swollen prostate can lead to ED.
Well do this by looking through the links between benign prostatic hyperplasia, prostatitis and erectile dysfunction, their causes, as well as treatment options which may affect erectile abilities.
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Causes Of An Enlarged Prostate
We dont actually know what causes prostate enlargement. Potential factors include:
We do know that men who have their testicles removed â for example, due to testicular cancer â do not experience prostate enlargement.
If the testicles are removed after prostate enlargement occurs, the prostate begins to shrink
What we do know is that:
- Your chances of developing an enlarged prostate increase with age
- Enlarged prostates are so common that its believed all males will eventually experience an enlarged prostate if they live long enough. In fact, over 90% of males over 80 have BPH.
- There are no specific risk factors for prostate enlargement, other than having testicles.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia
The symptoms of BPH are mainly related to the lower urinary tract. Symptoms vary widely from person to person.
Some people may never get symptoms or have very mild symptoms, and others may eventually develop severe impacts that affect the bladder and kidneys and require medical treatment, including surgery. This often depends on where in the prostate the enlargement is.
Common symptoms include:
Pain or a feeling of difficulty urinating
The feeling that the bladder hasnt completely emptied
A poor/slow urine stream
Does Enlarged Prostate Cause Ed
Of the many symptoms caused by BPH, one of the most common complaints men have when visiting a urologist is Erectile Dysfunction or ED. This is defined as the inability of a man to attain or maintain an erection sufficient for vaginal penetration and satisfactory sexual performance.
BPH does not directly cause ED, but many men with BPH seek medical attention to relieve ED.
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What Can I As A Partner Expect
One of the effects of prostate cancer treatment is erectile dysfunction or impotence. This means that your partner may not be able to have erections that are hard enough for him to have sex with you or that he may not be interested in sex because of the medicine he is taking to treat his prostate cancer. This affects not only the man, but you, too, as his intimate partner. If you are the partner of a man with erectile dysfunction, it can be difficult to cope with changes in your sexual relationship. Sometimes men struggle to come to terms with changes in their body image or their ability to perform sexually. This can sometimes result in him staying away from intimate situations where he may feel under pressure to make love. As a partner you may feel rejected by what seems like a lack of sexual interest or intimacy. This may not have anything to do with his feelings for you, but is a result of his cancer treatment. Erectile dysfunction can be difficult for both of you. You may want to reassure your partner that:
- Sex is not as important as long as he is healthy and that he is no less of a man to you
- You will work through it with him
- You understand his feelings
- He is important to you
It may help if you explain to your partner how important nonsexual touching and intimacy such as kissing and cuddling is to you.
Can Anything Be Done For Erectile Dysfunction Caused By Prostate Cancer Treatment
Yes, there are things you can try if you have erectile dysfunction after your prostate cancer treatment. You should keep in mind that the following things will affect your ability to have an erection after your prostate cancer treatment:
- How good your erections were before your treatment
- Other medical conditions you have like high blood pressure or diabetes
- Some types of medicines you may take such as medicines for high blood pressure or antidepressants
- Things you do in your life such as drinking or smoking
- The type of prostate cancer treatment you had
It is important that you and your partner speak with your doctor or healthcare team about what you can do. Your doctor or healthcare team will speak with you about what might work best for you if you have erectile dysfunction. It is important that you speak with them since some treatments for erectile dysfunction can affect other medical problems you may have.
Types of treatment for erectile dysfunction include:
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What Is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia
Benign prostatic hyperplasia is the technical term for an enlarged prostate. Its a widespread condition where the prostate gets bigger, often associated with older age. The majority of men will have some form of BPH by the age of 80. The word benign means that this growth is not because of cancer.
Enlarged Prostate And Erectile Dysfunction: How Are They Related
An enlarged prostate is common and often happens as men age. While it may cause troublesome symptoms and require treatment, an enlarged prostate is not always harmful. In fact, it often goes unnoticed. However, your physician should always check and manage this condition if you have it.
Erectile dysfunction ¹ is a different condition. Its sex-related and involves difficulty gaining and maintaining an erection. Experts have found that ED may be related to prostate enlargement.²
The relationship between an enlarged prostate and ED is quite complex. The conditions can occur together with some links between them, possibly due to the similar risk factors contributing to each condition. Risk factors include obesity and high blood pressure.Researchers believe prostate enlargement and its treatments contribute to ED.
Medications designed for improving ED³ can improve symptoms of prostate enlargement.
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Treatment Of Enlarged Prostate And Ed
While an enlarged prostate can cause ED, there are treatment options available to you to facilitate normal sexual function. Luckily many forms of enlarged prostate-associated erectile dysfunction are treatable, and by tackling the underlying problem of an enlarged prostate, many men can restore or greatly improve their sexual performance.
Which Bph Symptoms Are Associated With Ed
In a study which examined at this issue, the researchers studied 2,115 men between the ages of 40 and 79. The study participants completed questionnaires related to their sexual function and urinary tract symptoms every two years.
The results showed that each of the indicators of sexual function was inversely related to the severity of urinary tract symptoms reported by the participants .
Urinary tract symptoms resulting from BPH which were most strongly associated with sexual dysfunction were:
- A feeling of urgency
- Weak urine stream
- Straining to start urinating
The results show that there may be a common cause for BPH and ED and therefore future medical treatments which may focus on it could prove effective for treating both conditions according to researcher Steven Jacobsen, of the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine 8.
In conclusion, most of the men with lower urinary tract symptoms resulting from BPH also suffer from erectile dysfunction problems, and the two disorders have common mechanisms and risk factors. Therefore, if you have erectile or urinary problems it is recommended to seek medical advice and treatment as soon as possible, in order to prevent symptoms exacerbation.
Elliott SP, Gulati M, Pasta DJ, Spitalny GM, Kane CJ, Yee R et al. Obstructive lower urinary tract symptoms correlate with erectile dysfunction. Urology 2004 63: 1148-1152.
Andersson KE, Wagner G. Physiology of penile erection. Physiol Rev 1995 75: 191-236.
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What Is Benign Prostate Hyperplasia
As men age, their prostate gland usually goes through a growth period as part of the natural aging process. From the age of 60, about 60% of the men have an enlarged prostate, while about half of them have lower urinary tract symptoms as a result. In most cases around the age of 50, the enlarged prostate starts causing problems in the urinary system, which not only undermine the quality of life but occasionally affect sexual function as well. It happens as the enlarged prostate presses against and narrows the urethra, causing problems with urine flow and other urinary problems. Consequently, the bladder wall becomes thicker and the bladder may weaken and lose its elasticity and the ability to empty completely. And if the bladder cannot void completely, remaining residual urine could lead to urinary tract infections and other complications.
Common symptoms of BPH include:
- A weak urine stream
- Needing to get up multiple times at night to urinate
- Terminal dribbling
These symptoms usually produce serious effects on life quality and routine of many men. Furthermore, numerous men feel that their masculinity is being undermined and this often gives rise to problems with relationships.
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How Can A Swollen Prostate Cause Erectile Dysfunction
If you know anything about prostatic diseases, then you may be aware of how strongly they can affect the quality of life.
A condition like benign prostatic hyperplasia may cause lower urinary tract symptoms .
Urinary tract infections , bladder damage, blood in the urine, as well as urinary retention are often complications that result from BPH.
In understanding how BPH may lead to ED, letâs get familiar with a little something called the alpha 1-adrenergic receptor.
In BPH, there is an imbalance in the autonomic control of smooth muscles, their contraction and relaxation.
This leads to increased smooth muscle tone in the prostate. Increased smooth muscle tone is caused by the a1-adrenergic receptor.
When this receptor is activated by noradrenaline , the penile tissues are contracted.
Erectile dysfunction favors the contraction of smooth muscles which encourages detumescence, and complicates the relaxation of these muscles, which is responsible for erections.
It is believed that 70 percent of men with BPH have an associated erectile dysfunction.
With prostatitis, erectile dysfunction may be induced by the pain caused from the condition.
If you suffer from chronic bacterial prostatitis for example, it isnt uncommon to experience pain in the genital area and groin.
This pain can last for three months and above.
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Prostate Cancer And Erectile Dysfunction
And speaking of a swollen prostate causing ED while prostate cancer may not always be a direct cause of sexual dysfunction, a growing prostate tumor could decrease sexual function by causing lower urinary tract symptoms.
Additionally the psychological effects of the diagnosis itself and the treatments for the cancer can also cause erectile problems.
While these conditions are direct causes of erectile function, treatments to manage their effects may also lead to erectile dysfunction.
Providing Your Medical History
At first, the doctor will probably ask you about your medical history. Do you have any chronic illnesses? What illnesses and operations have you had in the past? What medications are you taking, if any? Your doctor is also likely to ask about your psychological well-being and lifestyle: Do you suffer from depression? Are you under a lot of stress? Do you drink alcohol? Smoke? Use illegal drugs? Have you felt a loss of affection for your partner? Have you recently grown interested in a new partner?
As part of this health history, be prepared to tell your doctor specific details about the symptoms that brought you to the office and when they began. Your doctor might want to know how often you had sex before the problem started and if there have been weeks or months in the past when youve had erectile dysfunction. Your doctor may conduct a written or verbal screening test.
If the cause is clear a recent operation for prostate cancer, for example the conversation may move directly to your treatment options. Otherwise, you may need to answer more questions to help the doctor narrow down the possible causes and avoid unnecessary testing.
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How Many Times Should A Man Release Sperm In A Week
An analysis of multiple studies by Chinese researchers found that a men should ideally release sperm around 2-4 times a week. This practice is associated with a low risk for prostate cancer. Having said that, ejaculating more often than the recommended times does not further reduce the risk for prostate cancer.
Can You Take Erectile Dysfunction Medications If You Are Taking Prostate Problems Medications
Actually, yes. Taking medication for erectile dysfunction may also be useful in treating the symptoms of something like benign prostatic hyperplasia .
In fact, there is a medication thatâs used to treat both problems with an erection as well as issues that have occurred from an enlarged prostate.
Letâs take tadalafil for example. This medication can treat both issues, and it can also treat pulmonary hypertension. This medication is more well-known as Cialis or at Adcirca.
It might also be beneficial to know that some men who have an enlarged prostate and erectile dysfunction often experience alleviation of their symptoms after erectile dysfunction medications.
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When Should You Seek Medical Advice
Ideally, you should seek medical attention as soon as you notice somethings off before the symptoms get worse and start disrupting your peace.
Currently, we have no conclusive studies to show ED drugs are safe and completely effective at treating urinary symptoms of an enlarged prostate. Do not start any prescription medications without the help of a doctor. Your doctor might also be able to help you in making the right lifestyle changes and exercises needed to treat an Enlarged prostate and the resulting symptoms.
If you have anymore concerns related to mens health, comment with them below and well be sure to take it up soon. For more such blogs, keep checking this space!
Are There Things I Can Do To Help Myself If I Have Erectile Dysfunction
Yes, there are changes you can make in your life that may help with your erectile dysfunction. Remember to speak with your doctor or healthcare team before making any of these changes.
Some changes you may want to consider are:
- Try to exercise on a regular basis.
- Try to eat a healthy diet.
- Drink responsibly. Long-term, heavy drinking lowers your ability to have an erection.
- Try to lower your stress and fatigue . Being diagnosed with prostate cancer and working in all the changes it brings to your life can be stressful. Stress and the tiredness caused by your prostate cancer treatment, can make it difficult for you to get in the mood. Many men going through prostate cancer treatment feel this way. Talking with your partner might help lower your stress. You may also speak to your doctor or healthcare team about how you are feeling. They are there to help you through this time.
- Stop smoking. Research studies show that smoking can harm your ability to have sex. If you need help to stop smoking, speak with your doctor or healthcare team.
- Practice your Kegel exercises. Kegel exercises help strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, which support your bladder and bowel. These muscles also help with erections. For more information, please see the IMPACT booklet, Kegel Exercises for Men.
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Are There New Strategies In The Near Future That May Be Helpful In Improving Erection Recovery After Surgery
Neuromodulatory therapy, represents an exciting, rapidly developing approach to revitalize intact nerves and promote nerve growth. Therapeutic prospects include neurotrophins, neuroimmunophilin ligands, neuronal cell death inhibitors, nerve guides, tissue engineering/stem cell therapy, electrical stimulation, and even gene therapy.
Can Prostate Massage Really Help An Enlarged Prostate
Prostate milking, or prostate massage, has the ability to give men intense relief from prostate problems. The prostate, or the prostate gland is a major organ in the male reproductive system.
Unfortunately, factors like aging and a poor lifestyle can make the prostate weak. This results in an impairment in urinary function, sexual function and prostate inflammation.
However, by massaging the prostate on a regular basis, blood flow increases in the area. The pain that is related to an inflamed prostate as well as discomfort in the area diminishes.
It is important to know that prostate massage is not a new practice. It is a treatment that has been utilized for thousands of years in Asian culture, and it is still a treatment that is used today.
In fact, many men have reported feeling much better after one prostate massage session.
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