The prostate gland is a small, walnut-shaped organ. It lies just below a man’s bladder. It surrounds the urethra, the tube that carries urine through the penis and out of the body.
Prostatitis is a painful condition caused by inflammation or infection of the prostate gland. Sometimes the condition is caused by bacteria, but often the cause is not known.
Prostatitis caused by bacteria usually is treated with self-care and antibiotics.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It’s also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
How can you care for yourself at home?
- If your doctor prescribed antibiotics, take them as directed. Do not stop taking them just because you feel better. You need to take the full course of antibiotics.
- Take an over-the-counter pain medicine, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), or naproxen (Aleve). Be safe with medicines. Read and follow all instructions on the label.
- Take warm baths to help soothe pain.
- Straining to pass stools can hurt when your prostate is inflamed. Avoid constipation.
- Include fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains in your diet each day. These foods are high in fibre.
- Drink plenty of fluids, enough so that your urine is light yellow or clear like water. If you have kidney, heart, or liver disease and have to limit fluids, talk with your doctor before you increase the amount of fluids you drink.
- Get some exercise every day. Build up slowly to 30 to 60 minutes a day on 5 or more days of the week.
- Take a fibre supplement, such as Benefibre or Metamucil, every day if needed. Read and follow the instructions on the label.
- Schedule time each day for a bowel movement. Having a daily routine may help. Take your time and do not strain when having a bowel movement.
- Avoid alcohol, caffeine, and spicy foods, especially if they make your symptoms worse.
When should you call for help?
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
- You have symptoms of a urinary tract infection. These may include:
- Pain or burning when you urinate.
- A frequent need to urinate without being able to pass much urine.
- Pain in the flank, which is just below the rib cage and above the waist on either side of the back.
- Blood in your urine.
- A fever.
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor if:
- You cannot empty your bladder completely.
- You do not get better as expected.