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Enlarged Prostate - Diagnosis

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Your physician will need to perform a urinalysis to check for infection or blood cells. A digital rectal exam to palpate the prostate will also be performed. Occasionally, a sample of prostatic fluid, which is obtained by pressing on the prostate during the digital rectal exam may be collected. This fluid is examined for white blood cells and bacteria. In some cases a culture is done on this fluid, or on semen obtained from a semen sample.

Prostate Enlargement

There are many ways to evaluate whether a patient has an enlarged prostate, some of the most common ways follow:

  • Your doctor will ask you detailed questions about your symptoms. You will most likely be asked about other health problems, medications, including over-the-counter (OTC) drugs,,you're taking and whether there's a history of prostate problems in your family.

  • Your doctor may perform a digital rectal exam. Due to the proximity of the prostate to the rectum, your doctor can determine whether your prostate is enlarged and also check for signs of prostate cancer.

  • A urine test may help rule out an infection or other conditions that cause prostate enlargement-like symptoms, such as prostatitis, bladder infection or kidney disease.

Bladder Outlet Obstruction

Your doctor will ask detailed questions about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be performed to help determine if a bladder outlet obstruction exists.

One of the most common causes of this condition is an enlarged prostate or BPH. A thorough history and physical examination evaluating other potential sources of lower urinary tract obstructive symptoms should be undertaken before empiric treatment for BPH is begun.