The key difference between BPH and prostatitis is that BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia) is the noncancerous increase in the size of the prostate gland, while prostatitis is the inflammation of the prostate gland.
The prostate gland is a walnut-sized gland located between the bladder and penis. It is in front of the rectum. The urethra runs through the center of the prostate gland, letting urine flow out of the body. The prostate gland secretes a fluid that nourishes male sperm. During the process of ejaculation, the prostate gland squeezes this particular fluid into the urethra. Later, it is expelled with sperms as semen. The three most common medical conditions associated with prostate glands are BPH, prostatitis, and prostate cancer.
What is BPH?
Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) refers to the noncancerous increase in the size of the prostate gland. In other words, it is the enlargement of the prostate gland. It is more common when men get older. The symptoms may include trouble starting to urinate, a weak stream, frequent urination, inability to urinate, and loss of bladder control. There are some complications associated with BPH, such as urinary tract infection, bladder stones, and chronic kidney problems, etc. The cause of BPH is unclear. However, the risk factors include a family history of prostate diseases, obesity, type 2 diabetes, not doing enough exercises, and erectile dysfunction. Sometimes, medications like pseudoephedrine, anticholinergic drugs, and calcium channel blockers can worsen the symptoms.
The diagnosis of this medical condition can be made through rectal examination, urine analysis, kidney function test, prostate-specific antigen (PSA), and transrectal ultrasonography. The treatment plan includes lifestyle changes, medications, and surgery. Those who have milder symptoms are recommended to lose weight, exercise, and decrease caffeine intake. Those with significant symptoms are treated with alpha-blockers (terazosin) and 5alpha reductase inhibitors (finasteride). Those who do not improve with other measures have to undergo to surgical removal of part of the prostate gland. Furthermore, phytotherapies with saw palmetto also show great improvement in this condition.
What is Prostatitis?
Prostatitis is the swelling and inflammation of the prostate gland. It can affect men of any age. However, it is more common in younger men who are between 30 to 50 years. The main two types of prostatitis are bacterial prostatitis and non-bacterial prostatitis. Bacterial prostatitis is due to acute or chronic bacterial infection. The possible causes of non-bacterial prostatitis are a past bacterial prostatitis infection, irritation from some chemicals, a problem with nerves connecting the lower urinary tract, problems with pelvic floor muscles, sexual abuse, and chronic anxiety problems. The symptoms may include pain and burning sensation while peeing, difficulty urinating, frequent urination, urgent need to urinate, cloud urine, blood in the urine, pain in the abdomen, groin, and lower back, the pain of the testicles, painful ejaculation, and flu-like symptoms.
The diagnosis of this condition is made through urine tests, blood tests, post-prostatic massages, and imaging tests (CT scan, X-ray, and ultrasound). The treatment is based on the underlying cause. Prostatitis treatment options may include antibiotics, alpha-blockers, and anti-inflammatory agents.
What are the Similarities Between BPH and Prostatitis?
- BPH and prostatitis are two prostate gland diseases.
- Both medical conditions affect men.
- Pain while urinating and pain around the region of the penis are common symptoms of both medical conditions.
- These medical conditions can significantly affect the quality of life of men.
- They are treatable medical conditions.
What is the Difference Between BPH and Prostatitis?
BPH is a condition caused due to a noncancerous increase in the size of the prostate gland, while prostatitis is the inflammation of the prostate gland. Thus, this is the key difference between BPH and prostatitis. Furthermore, BPH commonly affects older men, while prostatitis can affect men of any age.
The below infographic presents the differences between BPH and prostatitis in tabular form for side by side comparison.
Summary – BPH vs Prostatitis
The prostate gland is a male reproductive organ. It secretes a fluid that feeds and protects sperm cells. The most common forms of prostrate diseases are BPH, prostatitis, and prostate cancer. BPH is the noncancerous increase in the size of the prostate gland, while prostatitis is the inflammation of the prostate gland. So, this is the key difference between BPH and prostatitis.
1. “Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH): Symptoms & Treatments.” Cleveland Clinic.
2. “Prostatitis: Symptoms, Complications, and Treatment.” Practo, Practo Health Wiki.