What is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)?

An enlarged prostate, or Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), is the most common noncancerous prostate disease. The enlarged prostate pushes against the urethra and bladder and can block the flow of urine. This can lead to lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS). Now that you know the meaning of BPH, let’s take a closer look at symptoms and diagnosis.


Symptoms of BPH and Prostate Swelling

The most common symptoms of BPH and prostate swelling are:

  • Frequent urination

  • Hesitancy or difficulty getting the urine stream going

  • Intermittent urination, when the stream is interrupted

  • Nighttime urination, when sleep is interrupted by the need to urinate

  • Urgency or inability to suppress the need to urinate

  • Weak urinary stream while voiding


Diagnosis of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)

Patients with LUTS should see a doctor to confirm the diagnosis of BPH. There are other conditions that mimic BPH including bladder infections, urinary tract stones and neurological bladder problems.

There are numerous tests your physician can arrange including:

  1. a digital rectal examination to assess size and rule out nodules

  2. urine tests to rule out infections or blood in the urine

  3. PSA or prostate specific antigen to screen for prostate cancer

  4. US either pelvic or transrectal to assess prostate volume

Your urologist may also perform a cystoscopy to assess the prostate and bladder condition.  A flowrate and residual is another in office test that can help determine the need for BPH treatment.


IPSS Symptom Score

This is a patient completed questionnaire that helps your urologist in Hamilton Ontario with diagnosis of BPH and how severe your urinary symptoms are.

Go ahead to complete the survey below to find your score.

How did you score?

If you scored over 20 and you are mostly dissatisfied, unhappy or terrible with your current symptoms, please talk to your family doctor and be referred to a urologist. Your urologist will assess your symptoms and discuss treatments.