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Prostate Health

How much do you know about the prostate?  Surprisingly, many of us don’t know what it is, where it’s located, or what it does.  It’s often something we don’t learn about until we’re at the age when the doctor says those simple, yet dreaded words… “Bend over and spread em”.  However, with prostate health being on the forefront now a days, men of all ages are gaining awareness of this very important and essential part of our anatomy.

A donut shaped, walnut-sized sex gland that encircles the urethra (the tube that runs from the bladder to the tip of the penis); the prostate is part of the male reproductive system, and is responsible for making prostatic fluid or semen, which nourishes and carries sperm during ejaculation.  The muscles in the prostate contract or squeeze fluid from the prostate into the urethral tract during ejaculation, where it meets up with sperm produced by the testicles.  Do I have your attention now?!  The prostate is located directly below the bladder and just in front of the rectum.  Yep, it’s what the doctor is checking during the exam!

Chances are if you’re less than 40 years old you haven’t had a prostate exam. With prostate cancer being the second leading cause of cancer deaths among men, the medical profession is emphasizing prostate testing and screening for middle age men or any man experiencing problems.

Fortunately, not all prostate problems are cancer, nor do they increase your chance of getting it.  An enlarged prostate means the gland has grown larger for some reason.  There are two recognized diseases, other than cancer, that can affect the prostate: prostatitis, which is caused by inflammation, and benign prostatic hypertrophy or BPH, which is an enlarged prostate with no signs of cancer.

Prostatitis can affect men of all ages, and is typically caused by bacteria that have invaded the prostrate from elsewhere in the body… but not always; which it’s then referred to as noninfectious prostatitis.  Symptoms of prostatitis often present with urine retention, pain between the scrotum and rectum, fever, bloody urine, frequent urination accompanied by burning, and possible bladder infection.  Treatment for bacterial prostatitis is normally antibiotic therapy; however, because prostatitis is difficult to treat, treatment may have to be repeated or prolonged.  Medical care should always be sought, since this is a serious and uncomfortable infection.

BPH is the gradual enlargement of the prostate, which mainly happens due to hormonal changes associated with aging.  Although prostate changes begin occurring in a man’s 30’s, noticeable symptoms don’t usually present until his late 40’s or 50’s.  Nearly half of all men over the age of fifty have BPH, with numbers increasing with age.  Common symptoms include changes in urination: trouble starting the flow, frequent urinating, slow or delayed flow, inability to empty bladder completely, straining to start urine flow, etc.  Symptoms should not be ignored, and a doctor should be seen as soon as you notice any of these changes – for diagnosis and treatment, and to rule out cancer.  Although BHP treatment is often a waiting game to see if symptoms worsen, there is medication and surgical options for more advanced cases.

There are many medications to treat BPH, along with natural alternatives like saw palmetto and pumpkin seed oil.  Treatment is a personal choice; however, I urge you not to waste time on any treatment that doesn’t prove effective.  There are many options, so try a different one whenever you don’t get the desired results.  Regardless of the treatment you choose, always see a doctor first, so you can get an accurate diagnosis.  We don’t want you to assume it’s BPH when it’s not.

Prostate cancer is believed to be a disease caused by aging, with the exact causes unknown.   However, certain risk factors have been identified and linked to this type cancer: age sixty-five or older, African-American, and having a father or brother with prostate cancer.  In addition, exposure to toxic chemicals and the use of testosterone are two other contributors that can increase your chances of contracting prostate cancer.  Approximately 80% of all cases occur in men over the age of sixty-five, and by the age of eighty, some studies conclude three quarters of these men have prostate cancer to some degree.  Fortunately, in most cases, it’s a very slow growing cancer; however, that doesn’t mean it is okay to ignore symptoms.  Symptoms typically mimic symptoms of other prostrate problems, which is why it is important to be tested as soon as any changes happen.

Testing for an enlarged prostate, and any prostate related problems, usually involve a digital rectal exam, in which the doctor inserts a gloved finger into the rectum to feel the prostate for any hardness (better known as the “bend over and spread em exam”), and a prostate-specific antigens or PSA blood test, which measures the levels of a protein secreted by the prostate.  Testing is crucial in order to determine the reason for an enlarged prostate.  A general doctor (GP) or urologist are the doctors of choice for prostate testing and treatment.

Our prostate isn’t something we normally think about unless there’s a problem.  Unfortunately, prostate problems are becoming more and more common in today’s modern world.  Prostate enlargement almost seems inevitable, since it’s usually related to aging.  If that’s the case, controlling the situation can be challenging, but not impossible.  Most importantly, get professional help if you notice any changes, which often start with impaired urination.  Prostate awareness should be a fact of life for every man, regardless of age.  Fear and embarrassment should never get in the way of maintaining our health, no matter what.  Being attentive to health issues is another important way to perfect your image and life.  So, gentlemen, let’s take care of business!

by Aaron Marino


Past Topics

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Aaron Marino of alpha m. presents the topic about how to get up early. A viewer doesn't know how to force himself out of bed. Aaron says that the hardest part is the first step out of the bed. Aaron didn't develop into a morning person until he became a personal trainer, having to meet clients at 6am. He overslept about every 2-weeks. He ultimately bought two obnoxious and loud alarm clocks. He puRead More»
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Remember if you ask someone out on a date, you are obligated to pay. In fact, Aaron Marino of alpha m. thinks a man should always pay. You don't need to have money to do fun and inventive dates. He presents thrifty date options that don't break the bank. Your date will think you are sweet and creative: Pack a picnic (with a bottle of wine) in your backpack and go to the park Buy a kite, football,Read More»
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Aaron Marino of alpha m. gives advice about how to handle a relationship where you feel that her career and appearance exceed yours. Do not screw-up a really good thing due to insecurities. The fact is that you ARE dating her, and she likes you. This is a great thing and yours to lose. She likes you for reasons, so don't do anything that sabotages that. Don't keep searching for reassurances that sRead More»
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Aaron Marino of alpha m. answers vulnerable questions during his Man Sphere interview. The questions are not just 'surface stuff' and are things that get to the 'core of the matter' and probe 'innermost feelings'. Aaron opened himself up and now wants to learn about you. This issue’s Man We Admire is Atlanta style and image guru Aaron Marino. I first came across Aaron’s videos on YouTube a fewRead More»
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Two aspects Aaron Marino of alpha m usually doesn't discuss are religion and politics because people are so passionate about those topics plus he has viewers from all over the world will varying views. Aaron is mindful of the diversity of the people watching these videos. But, because of an email he got last night, he is now addressing both. He doesn't feel that you should believe what he believesRead More»

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