benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH)

Q | what is the treatment for BPH?

A | If your symptoms are not too bothersome and prostate cancer has been excluded, both you and your urologist may decide against actively treating the prostate enlargement ("watchful waiting").

Drug treatments are available to try and relieve your symptoms. There are two main classes of drugs that are in use:

i) Alpha-blockers. These act by relaxing the smooth muscle of the prostate and bladder neck outlet to improve your urinary flow. Drugs in this group include tamsulosin, alfuzosin, terazosin and doxozacin.

ii) Drugs that stop the production of dihydrotestosterone (DHT) produced from testosterone. The main drug in this group is finasteride. Finasteride takes longer to work and has been shown to be of most benefit in patients with larger prostates.

Your urologist will discuss the side effects of these drugs with you at your consultation.

Operative treatments for BPH include TURP, the Greenlight XPS laser prostatectomy and other minimally invasive therapies.