Medications for BPH (Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia) [video]

Video author: Streaming Well
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Video Transcript

Streaming Well

What medication is available for BPH?

Christopher Eden: Treatment for BPH initially is virtually always with tablets. There is certainly an option, clearly, of doing nothing if patients do have mild symptoms. They have the test. They find out that they don't have prostate cancer. They don't have severe obstruction.

Mr. Christopher Eden, Consultant Urologist: Many patients will then be reassured by that and opt to have surveillance alone. But if they do want to have some form of treatment, it virtually always initially takes the form of an alpha blocker.

Alpha blockers relax the muscle tissue at the opening to your bladder

This is a drug which is used to relax the smooth muscle at the outlet of the bladder, reduce the obstruction, and hopefully improve the symptoms. And alpha blockers do that in about 2/3 of men. If they have a large prostate, over 40 mL in size, and if alpha blockers are not completely effective, then it may be sensible to add in a drug called Proscar or finasteride which shrinks the prostate, but it does this very slowly. It doesn't start to work until 6 months of taking the drug, and it doesn't plateau until 5 years.

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