Men’s Health
Men’s Health
Prostatitis is inflammation of the prostate gland. Prostatitis is classified into acute, chronic, asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis, and chronic pelvic pain syndrome. The term prostatitis refers, in its strictest sense, to histological (microscopic) inflammation of the tissue of the prostate gland. Like all forms of inflammation, it can be associated with an appropriate response of the body to an infection, but it also occurs in the absence of infection
 
Chronic bacterial prostatitis is a bacterial infection of the prostate gland. It should be distinguished from other forms of prostatitis such as acute bacterial prostatitis and chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS).Chronic bacterial prostatitis usually presents with an intermittent urinary tract infection(UTI)-type picture. It is defined as recurrent urinary tract infections in men originating from a chronic infection in the prostate. Symptoms may be completely absent until there is also bladder infection, and the most troublesome problem is usually recurrent cystitis.
 
In chronic bacterial prostatitis there are bacteria in the prostate, but there may be no symptoms or milder symptoms than occur with acute prostatitis.The prostate infection is diagnosed by culturing urine as well as prostate fluid , which are obtained by the doctor performing a rectal exam and putting pressure on the prostate. If no fluid is recovered after this prostatic massage, a post massage urine should also contain any prostatic bacteria.
 
Prostate specific antigen(PSA) levels may be elevated, although there is no malignancy. Semen analysis is a useful diagnostic tool. Semen cultures are also performed
 
Chronic nonbacterial prostatitis or chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS) is a pelvic pain condition in men, and should be distinguished from other forms of prostatitis such as chronic bacterial prostatitis and acute bacterial prostatitis. This condition was formerly known as prostatodynia (painful prostate).
 
Chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS) is characterized by pelvic or perineal pain without evidence of urinary tract infection, lasting longer than 3 months, as the key symptom. Pain can range from mild to debilitating. Pain may radiate to the back and rectum, making sitting uncomfortable. Pain can be present in the perineum, testicles, tip of penis, pubic or bladder area.Dysuria, arthralgia, myalgia, unexplained fatigue, abdominal pain, constant burning pain in the penis, and frequency may all be present. Frequent urination and increased urgency may suggest interstitial cystitis (inflammation centred in bladder rather than prostate). Post-ejaculatory pain, mediated by nerves and muscles, is a hallmark of the condition.Some patients report low libido, sexual dysfunction and erectile difficulties.
 
Theories behind the disease include stress-driven hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis dysfunction and adrenocortical hormone (endocrine) abnormalities,neurogenic inflammation,and myofascial pain syndrome. In the latter two categories, dysregulation of the local nervous system due to past trauma, infection or an anxious disposition and chronic albeit unconscious pelvic tensing lead to inflammation that is mediated by substances released by nerve cells .The prostate (and other areas of the genitourinary tract: bladder, urethra, testicles) can become inflamed by the action of the chronically activated pelvic nerves on the mast cells at the end of the nerve pathways.Similar stress-induced genitourinary inflammation has been shown experimentally in other mammals.
 
Extraprostatic abdominal/pelvic tenderness is present in >50% of patients with chronic pelvic pain syndrome but only 7% of controls. Healthy men have slightly more bacteria in their semen than men with CPPS. Men with CP/CPPS are more likely than the general population to suffer from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
Erectile dysfunction, or impotence, means not being able to get or keep an erection that is sufficient for sexual intercourse. Many men have erectile dysfunction at some time in their lives. It can come and go.It is estimated erectile dysfunction affects about 1 million men in Australia. It is much more common in older men.
 
Erectile dysfunction can have a range of causes, both physical and psychological.Physical factors that can cause erectile dysfunction include:
    general aging
    diabetes
    multiple sclerosis (MS)
    prostate disease
    high blood pressure
    under-active thyroid gland (hypothyroidism)
    alcohol
    some medicines
    cardiovascular disease
    obesity
    Parkinson’s disease
    multiple sclerosis
    smoking, alcoholism or other substance abuse
    Peyronie's disease (scar tissue inside the penis)
    sleep disorders
    treatments for prostate cancer or enlarged prostate
    surgery that affects the pelvic area or spinal cord
    spinal cord injuries.
 
Psychological factors that can cause erectile dysfunction include:
    unresolved problems, conflicts or issues within a sexual and emotional relationship
    anxiety about sexual performance (this is most common at the start of a new relationship, if a man has had previous problems with sexual performance)
    depression
    stress.
It is common for a man who is impotent to be affected by a combination of physical and psychological causes.
 
Male-pattern baldness is the most common type of hair loss. It affects all men to some degree as they get older. For a few men, this process starts as early as the late teens. By the age of 60, most men have some degree of hair loss.
Some men aren't troubled by this at all. Others, however, suffer great emotional distress associated with a lack of self-esteem and, in some cases, depression.
 
Pattern baldness is often inherited and can affect men and women. It is caused when hair follicles are oversensitive to the hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT), produced by the male hormone, testosterone. DHT causes the follicles to shrink and eventually stop functioning. Both men and women produce this hormone in different amounts.
 
The involvement of testosterone in balding has led to the myth that going bald is a sign of virility. But men with male-pattern baldness don't have more male hormones than other men. Their hair follicles are simply more sensitive to the hormones.
 
Male-pattern baldness is so called because it tends to follow a set pattern. The first stage is usually a receding hairline, followed by thinning of the hair on the crown and temples.When these two areas meet in the middle, it leaves a horseshoe shape of hair around the back and sides of the head. Eventually, some men go completely bald.Male-pattern baldness is not a disease, so it won't affect your health. However, if it's causing you distress, consult your doctor to get a diagnosis.
 
Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted infection caused by a bacteria called 'Chlamydia trachomatis'. It affects both men and women, and it's spread by having unprotected vaginal, anal or oral sex with a person who has the infection.
 
Most people who have chlamydia don't notice any symptoms and so they don't know they have it. Research suggests that 50% of men and 70-80% of women don't get symptoms at all with a chlamydia infection.
 
Symptoms of chlamydia could be pain when you urinate, an unusual discharge from the penis, vagina or rectum or, in women, bleeding between periods or after sex.Testing for chlamydia is done with a urine test for men or a women have a urine test or a swab taken from the cervix or vagina
Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted infection that is caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV) – the same type of virus that causes cold sores.
As many as 1 in 8 sexually active Australian adults has genital herpes.Genital herpes can cause outbreaks of blisters or sores on the genitals and anus. Once infected, you can continue to have recurrent episodes of symptoms throughout your life.
 
There are 2 types of HSV, both viruses can affect either the lips, mouth, genital or anal areas, however:
    HSV1 commonly causes cold sores on the lips or face.
    HSV2 causes most genital herpes.
 
It is most easily spread when there are blisters or sores, but can still be passed even if a person has no current blisters or sores or other symptoms.