Here’s Why You Should Not Ignore Prostate Problems This Winter


Last Updated: January 08, 2023, 12:46 IST

Patients who have severe symptoms or are unresponsive to medications need surgical treatment. (Image: Shutterstock)

The pelvic muscles get tense due to the cold, which causes frequent urination or more bladder spasms in the winter season.

The winter season is known to affect the prostate (a part of the male reproductive system), which includes the seminal vesicles, penis, prostate and testicles, especially in patients who suffer from enlarged prostate problems or Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH).

The prostate is a small gland located between the penis and the bladder. The urethra is responsible for the flow of urine out of the body, which runs through the centre of the prostate, connecting the bladder to the penis. In Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) ailment, the prostate gland, which surrounds the urethra, enlarges or squeezes causing urinary problems.

Let us further understand, what is the link between the winter season and the ailment.

The pelvic muscles get tense due to the cold, which causes frequent urination or more bladder spasms. Men over 60 years of age may suffer from this problem. Another reason for increased urination in winter is the decrease in sweating.

Signs and symptoms of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia

People who have prostate gland enlargement or BPH ailment may have symptoms like:

  • Difficulty in urine release
  • Urgent or frequent need to urinate
  • Increase in nighttime urination
  • Unable to completely empty the bladder

Complications

Patients with extremely enlarged prostates may experience an increased risk of urinary infections. If BPH is not treated timely, it can damage the bladder muscles, the kidneys, causing stones in the urinary bladder, recurrent UTIs and in some patients a complete cessation of urination.

Diagnosis

Ultrasound of the abdomen, Urinalysis (routine analysis), Uroflowmetry test (urine collection) and PSA test (Prostate-Specific Antigen) should be performed for accurate diagnosis. An ultrasound-guided biopsy is done, if the PSA level is higher than normal, to confirm the presence or absence of Prostatic cancer.

Treatment

  •  The first step in treatment is medication and lifestyle changes.
  • Patients, who have mild symptoms and whose obstruction is confirmed by tests, are prescribed drugs to relax the prostate glands.
  • Patients who have severe symptoms or are unresponsive to medications need surgical treatment.
  • Prostate gland treatment can be done by modern endoscopic laser procedures (HOLEP) and endoscopic surgical procedures (TURP).

Precautions to control Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia:

  • While urinating, make sure your bladder is completely empty.
  • Don’t consume fluids 2 hours before bedtime.
  • Avoid eating foods that are bad for your prostate health, such as processed food, spicy and fried items, artificial sweeteners, sugar, dairy products and red meat.
  • Limit your intake of alcohol and caffeinated beverages such as coffee and tea, as they can aggravate urinary symptoms.
  • Maintaining a normal weight, as being overweight or obese is linked to several prostate health issues.
  • Stress can aggravate urinary frequency and painful urination, so you must stay active, and do meditation and yoga to reduce your stress levels.

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