The prostate is an organ forming part of the male reproductive system. It is located immediately below the bladder and just in front of the bowel. Its main function is to produce fluid which protects and enriches sperm. In younger men, the prostate is about the size of a walnut. It is doughnut shaped as it surrounds the beginning of the urethra, the tube that conveys urine from the bladder to the penis. The nerves that control erections surround the prostate.
Prostatitis is inflammation of the prostate gland. Prostatitis is classified into acute, chronic, asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis, and chronic pelvic pain syndrome.
In daily homeopathic practice we commonly encounter chronic prostatitis, for which no good allopathic treatment exists. Benign prostatic hypertrophy is also a common problem in our practices. These conditions often share symptoms and, therefore, the same set of remedies apply.
Therapeutic Tips For Prostatitis
It is useful to inquire about the original infection before antibiotic treatment began. If the patient can still recall the initial symptoms of the infection, these symptoms can provide useful clues towards the treatment, even though the symptoms are long since suppressed.
In chronic prostatitis, manual massages of the prostate on a weekly basis can have a dramatic effect and aid the rapid cure of the disorder Useful adjunctive treatments: Vitamin C (2000 mg per day). Zinc (50 mg per day). Vitamin B complex (50 mg complex daily).
Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy
Benign prostatic hypertrophy is an increase in size of the prostate.
Throughout their lives, men produce testosterone, an important male hormone, and small amounts of estrogen, a female hormone. As men age, the amount of active testosterone in the blood decreases, leaving a higher proportion of estrogen. Elevated levels of estrogen in blood causes this enlargement which is often referred to as benign prostate hypertrophy (BPH).
Symptoms of benign prostate hypertrophy include urinary stream hesitancy (needing to wait for the stream to begin), intermittency (when the stream starts and stops intermittently), straining to void, and dribbling. Pain and dysuria are usually not present.
This hidden epidemic of middle-aged and elderly patients is all too often viewed as a mere nuisance. While it is true that urinary obstruction can be readily treated with transurethral resection of the prostate, this procedure can result in surgical morbidity, incontinence and ejaculatory dysfunction. For these reasons, we attempt to avoid such surgery whenever possible. Newer procedures using balloon dilations, hyperthermia and laser treatments, while having shorter benefit, also cause less significant changes in the prostate function.
Therapeutic Tips For Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy
Treatment for prostatic hypertrophy is constitutional except during an acute, severe obstruction. When using acute, specific remedies giving a 30C dose daily for 4 or 5 days usually is sufficient to calm a retention episode.
If severe symptoms of obstruction are present, it is not wise to try remedy after remedy while the situation deteriorates. Limit the attempt to treat acutely to 24 hours. If there is no improvement, the patient should see a urologist.
Two very benign herbal treatments are available and are probably just as effective as these allopathic medications: Sew Palmetto and Pygeum extract. These herbs are readily available in most health food stores and provide relief for most patients while homeopathic treatment is started.
Most Common Homeopathic Remedies Prescribed For Prostate Conditions Include:
Apis mellifica: Stinging pain during urination that is worse when the final drops are passing is a strong indication for this remedy. Discomfort may also involve the bladder. The prostate area is swollen and very sensitive to touch. The person may feel worse from heat and from being in warm rooms, with improvement from being out in open air or from cool bathing.
Causticum: Urine loss when the person coughs or sneezes often indicates a need for this remedy. Once urine has started passing, the person may feel pressure or pulsation extending from the prostate to the bladder. Causticum is also indicated when sexual pleasure during orgasm is absent or diminished.
Chimaphilla umbellata: This remedy is often helpful when the prostate is enlarged, with urine retention and frequent urging. The person may have the feeling that a ball is lodged in the pelvic floor, or experience pressure, swelling, and soreness that are worse when sitting down.
Clematis: This remedy is often indicated when swelling of the prostate seems to have narrowed or tightened the urinary passage. Urine usually emerges slowly, in drops instead of a stream, with dribbling afterward.
Lycopodium: This remedy may be helpful if urine is slow to emerge, with pressure felt in the prostate both during and after urination. The prostate is enlarged, and impotence may also be a problem. People who need this remedy often suffer from digestive problems with gas and bloating, and have an energy slump in the late afternoon.
Pulsatilla: Prostate problems with discomfort after urination and pains that extend to the pelvis or into the bladder (often worse when the man is lying on his back) suggest a need for this remedy. There may also be a bland, thick, yellow discharge from the penis. Pulsatilla is usually suited to emotional individuals who want a lot of affection and feel best in open air.
Sabal serrulata: A frequent urge to urinate at night, with difficulty passing urine, and a feeling of coldness in the sexual organs, suggest a need for this remedy. It is sometimes also used in lower potencies for urinary incontinence in older men. This remedy is made from saw palmetto which is also used as an herbal extract for similar prostate problems.
Staphysagria: This remedy may be indicated if a man feels burning pain in his urinary passage even when urine is not flowing, and urine retention is troublesome. Men who are likely to respond to Staphysagria are often sentimental and romantic, and may also have problems with impotence (most often caused by shyness).
Thuja: When the prostate is enlarged, and the person has a frequent urge to urinate, with cutting or burning pain felt near the bladder neck, this remedy may bring relief. After urine passes, a dribbling sensation may be felt. A forked or divided urine stream is sometimes seen when this remedy is needed.
Please note that homeopathic prescriptions based on totality of symptoms and prescriptions that do not consider all circumstances are often not so effective. It is therefore highly advisable to contact a trained homeopath if you seek assistance with this complaint.
Also, this article is for your information only and is not supposed to replace a qualified medical advice. If your symptoms persist, do not hesitate to contact either a registered homeopath or your local medical practitioner.
Roger Morrison, Desktop Companion to Physical Pathology