BPH Alternative Treatments Options
Benign prostatic hyperplasia is a pathological condition that is very common in aging males. In fact, some degree of prostatic glandular enlargement is always present in men over 50 years of age. If left unmanaged, BPH may present with a variety of symptoms such as difficulty urination, poor stream, feeling of incomplete bladder evacuation and incontinence. In this article, we’ll go over BPH alternative treatments to consider if you’re looking for a holistic approach for treatment
Prostatic hyperplasia caused by a malignant or cancerous mass is an emergency that must be managed adequately. For mild cases of benign hyperplasia or glandular enlargement, prescription alpha 1 inhibitors are usually helpful at alleviating the symptoms.
What are some lifestyle changes that can help in addressing BPH symptoms?
Besides drugs, small changes in your diet and lifestyle can also play a major role in addressing BPH symptoms. Here are some BPH Alternative Treatments:
- Limit the intake of fluids a few hours before going to the bed
- Limit your intake of alcoholic or caffeinated beverages
- Avoid straining or forceful expulsion of urine
- In order to minimize the intensity of symptoms like urinary urgency or incomplete bladder evacuation, develop a habit of double voiding
Are there any medical options to manage BPH?
There are a variety of pharmacological options that can be used to address BPH. Sometimes BPH Alternative Treatments don’t work, your doctor may recommend a prostatectomy. Some common management options besides alpha – 1 inhibitors are:
- 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors: This class of drug reverse prostatic hyperplasia by reducing the peripheral conversion of testosterone into more potent forms such as dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Common side effects associated with this class of drugs are; sexual or erectile dysfunction, gynecomastia and loss of libido
- Phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors: This class of drugs is most frequently employed for the management of erectile dysfunction, but can also managed the symptoms of BPH. This include agents like Cialis and Viagra. Common side effects are, nausea, low blood pressure and priapism (painful erection)
- Combination therapy with multiple classes of drugs depending upon the response to therapy.
Can herbs help your symptoms of BPH?
Herbs are generally not recommended by Food and Drug Administration as there is limited data and insufficient studies regarding the efficacy and safety of herbs in the management of BPH.
Some commonly used herbs in the setting of BPH are:
- Saw palmetto: A lot of people swear by the efficacy of saw palmetto in the management of prostate related issues; however, several scientific studies suggest that saw palmetto does not have any action and is similar in efficacy to placebo.
- Ganodermataceae: This herb is made up of a special form of fungus that has similar action to alpha – 1 inhibitors. There is limited data that use of this herb can limit the activity of testosterone.
- Babassu: This herb is derived from Brazilian palm tree and is known to exert its action by reducing the growth of prostate glandular matrix.
- Cernilton: This herb is available as over-the-counter remedy and is derived from rye-grass pollen. Its use is associated with certain side effects and therefore optimal caution should be maintained
Herbs as BPH remedies are not always recommended due to varying degree of side effects and minimal efficacy in the management of inciting agent that is causing prostatic hyperplasia.
- Barry, M. J., Fowler, F. J., O’leary, M. P., Bruskewitz, R. C., Holtgrewe, H. L., Mebust, W. K., … & Measurement Committee of the American Urological Association. (2017). The American Urological Association symptom index for benign prostatic hyperplasia. The Journal of urology, 197(2), S189-S197.
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