Some Information About Prostate Stones
Prostate stones are probably more common than we think. When we talk about stones that can interfere with the passing of urine, it is usually kidney stones or gall bladder stones that come to mind. Prostate stones can also affect the passage of urine, as the prostate gland encompasses the urethra, the channel through which urine passes.
The Prostate Gland - The prostate gland produces an alkaline fluid that makes up a percentage of the semen that is ejaculated during a male orgasm. The purpose of this fluid is to neutralize acidity in the vaginal tract of a woman which would otherwise shorten the life span of sperm.
The secretion of this fluid can on occasion get stuck in the prostate gland, especially in older men when the glad enlarges or swells. When the fluid is trapped in the prostate gland for a length of time, it may begin to crystallize, forming calcified stones. These stones can interfere with the ejaculation of the prostate fluid, or if entering the urethra can interfere with the passing of urine.
Symptoms Of Prostate Stones - Most of the time, prostate stones show no symptoms giving evidence of their presence. When they do exhibit symptoms it usually is in the form of difficulty in urinating. Men who have prostate stones may feel a need to urinate more often, and pass only a small amount of urine each time, sometimes only at a dribble rather than a steady stream.
Prostate stones can cause pain in some instances, particularly if they become infected, in which case their removal by surgical means will be necessary. When prostate stones become large they can cause pain in the tip of the penis during ejaculation, when urinating, or during a bowel movement. Pain may also be felt in the lower back or abdomen, or in the area of the thighs. When prostate stones are large enough to cause pain they must be removed, and this is done through surgery.
No Link To Prostate Cancer - The appearance of prostate stones should not be confused with other problems or disorders that are sometimes experienced in the prostate gland and have nothing to do with prostate cancer. Unless the stones become infected they do not pose a particularly serious threat beyond the pain or discomfort they may cause. The pain that large prostate stone can cause is usually reason enough to have them removed.
Knowledge Of Cause and Prevention Is Limited - The exact cause of prostate stones remains somewhat of a mystery. Besides a connection between swelling of the prostate gland and the formation of stones, and the fact that both appear to be somewhat age related, exactly why all this happens is not known. Since the exact cause unknown, methods of prevention are not well known either, and the only real cure is surgery. There are medications available which appear to be helpful in preventing swelling of the prostate and the formation of prostate stones, but these medications do not seem to work uniformly from person to person. Some patients respond positively to prostate medications while others seem to be totally unaffected by them. The best approach to take when any symptoms of prostate stones begin to manifest themselves is simply to see a physician to determine what the best course of action to take should be. If you are over 40, your chances of having prostate stones from time to time are high. There does not seem to be much in the way of lifestyle choices that will dictate whether you get the stones or not. Fortunately the chances of your ever becoming aware of them are slight, and there is usually no need to be aware of them in the absence of symptoms.