The growth of cells in the prostate, both healthy and cancerous, is stimulated by testosterone. Male hormones, including testosterone, are produced almost entirely by the testicles, with only a small percentage produced by adrenal glands (small glands found just above the kidneys).


Signs and Symptoms of enlarged prostate can include:

  • A weak or slow urinary stream
  • A feeling of incomplete bladder emptying
  • Difficulty starting urination
  • Frequent urination
  • Urgency to urinate
  • Getting up frequently at night to urinate
  • A urinary stream that starts and stops
  • Straining to urinate
  • Continued dribbling of urine
  • Returning to urinate again minutes after finishing

What is benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH)?

Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is nonmalignant (noncancerous)enlargement of the prostate gland, a common occurrence in older men. It is also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia and abbreviated as BPH. It's also referred to as and enlarged prostate gland.

How common is the condition? Are there any risk factors?

BPHis extremely common. Advanced age is a risk factor for an enlarged prostate. Half of all men over 50 develop symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia, but only 10% need medical or surgical intervention.

What happens in BPH? What are the signs andsymptoms?

In benign prostatic hyperplasia, the prostate gland grows in size. It may compress the urethra which courses through the centre of the prostate. This can impede the flow of urine from the bladder through the urethra to the outside. It can cause urine to back up in the bladder (retention) leading to the need to urinate frequently during the day and night.

Enlarged Prostate Causes

In men, urine flows from the bladder through the urethra. BPH is a benign (noncancerous) enlargement of the prostate that blocks the flow of urine through the urethra. The prostate cells gradually multiply, creating an enlargement that puts pressure on the urethra. As the urethra narrows, the bladder has to contract more forcefully to push urine through the body.

Over time, the bladder muscle may gradually become stronger, thicker, and overly sensitive; it begins to contract even when it contains small amounts of urine, causing a need to urinate frequently. Eventually, the bladder muscle cannot overcome the effect of the narrowed urethra so urine remains in the bladder and it is not completely emptied.

Other serious problems can also develop over time, including bladder stones, blood in the urine, incontinence, and acute urinary retention (an inability to urinate). A sudden and complete inability to urinate is a medical emergency; you should see your doctor immediately.

More serious problems include when the bladder does not empty completely, you become at risk for developing urinary tract infections and complete blockage of the urethra, which may be a medical emergency and can lead injury to the kidneys.