Definition of Benign prostatic hyperplasia
Benign prostatic hyperplasia: Abbreviated BPH. A noncancerous prostate problem in which the normal elements of the prostate gland grow in size and number. Their sheer bulk may compress the urethra, which courses through the center of the prostate, impeding the flow of urine from the bladder through the urethra to the outside. This leads to urine retention and the need for frequent urination. If BPH is severe, complete blockage can occur.
BPH generally begins in a man's 30s, evolves slowly, and causes symptoms only after age 50. BPH is very common. Half of men over age 50 develop symptoms of PBH, but only 10% need medical or surgical intervention. Watchful waiting with annual medical monitoring is appropriate for most men with BPH. Medical therapy includes drugs such as finasteride (Proscar) and terazosin (Hytrin). Prostate surgery has traditionally been seen as offering the most benefits and the most risks for BPH. BPH is not a sign of prostate cancer. Also known as benign prostatic hypertrophy and nodular hyperplasia of the prostate.