Health Alert: New Guideline for Treating BPH

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The American Urological Association has issued updated guidelines on diagnosing and treating an enlarged prostate. Doctors should now start looking for the disease in patients 45 and above. Plus, an excellent source of natural phytochemicals that could reduce your risk for BPH.Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) is a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate. This is a condition that affects at least half of men over the age of 50. It is the most common prostate condition. With such a high rate of prevalence, it’s not surprising that medical experts at the American Urological Association (AUA) have issued updated guidelines on diagnosing and treating BPH.

The guidelines are meant to minimize the chances of getting the common symptoms of BPH: mainly lower urinary tract problems such as incontinence and sexual difficulties. The new guidelines include important procedures on how to help doctors diagnose and treat urinary tract problems. The guidelines also lower the age at which doctors should start to look for these issues in patients — from 50 to 45.

If a doctor is treating a male patient with suspected lower urinary tract issues, he or she should obtain a relevant medical history, assess symptoms using the AUA’s symptom index, and conduct a full physical examination, including a digital rectal exam, the new guidelines say.

And that’s not all: there should also be a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test and a urine analysis. Urine frequency and volume charts may also prove useful in helping your doctor to reach a diagnosis.

The advisory also includes new recommendations about drug treatment for enlarged prostate and advises doctors to delay prescribing alpha-blocker drugs to treat an enlarged prostate if a patient is scheduled for eye cataract surgery.

Make sure you and your doctor are up to speed on the new guidelines. In the meantime, here’s one natural remedy you can try to help lower your chances of getting BPH: eat lots of cruciferous vegetables.

These veggies have a high content of phytochemicals. In the plant kingdom, plants produce phytochemicals to protect themselves in remarkably sophisticated ways. Phytochemicals protect against the invasion of neighboring plants. They also give positive feeding cues to beneficial insects and negative feeding cues to harmful insects. And they give protection against microbial invasions and fungal growth. Cruciferous vegetables (e.g. broccoli, cauliflower,) are particularly high in a certain type of phytochemical called “glucosinolates.” “The American Journal of Nutrition” published the results of a study that found that cruciferous vegetables in particular reduced the risk for BPH in men between the ages of 46 and 81.