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    Do I Need A Prostate Exam
    zombielogic posted:
    I am 43 years old, and last year I went for a physical and told my doctor of over 25 years I woke up three or four times a night to urinate, had a weak stream, and felt like I needed to pee a lot. he said i didn't need a prostate exam unless the symptoms were worse. Am i wrong to question that or am i just seeing too many commercials telling me I'm falling apart?
    Reddingsailor responded:
    I am an 11 year prostate cancer survivor (treated with proton radiation). Over the past year, I developed a weak urine flow, and a urologist treated me for BPH. I was getting up only 1 time per night. Getting up 3 or 4 times per night is excessive, and could potentially effect your health due to an interrupted sleep pattern.

    I am confused as to why your doctor didn't do a prostate exam, which could turn up several possibilities for your symptoms. By all means, have this checked out. Don't wait! You could have BPH, prostatitis, or even a urethral stricture (narrowing). Ask for a PSA test, then begin tracking your results yearly. BPH will probably cause an elevation in PSA. If you have it, there are inexpensive meds that are effective, as well as some great supplements that contain saw palmetto, pygeum, and pumpkin seed extract.

    You are very young to have prostate cancer; however, if your PSA goes above 4, or doubles in 1 year, talk to your doctor about further tests.

    In my case, my weak urine stream was found to be due to a stricture that likely resulted from my proton radiation treatment, and not to BPH.

    Good luck!
    ttwood52 responded:
    Have you changed your habits? Drinking a lot in the evening and then what are you drinking - a lot of caffeinated drinks? Are you a lot more sedentary than you were before? Have you always had a strong stream when you urinated before? Are you using any allergy medications?

    These were questions I was asked when I had the same symptoms as you describe when I presented this to my Dr. I'm 59, retired, somewhat sedentary and borderline diabetic. In my case he did a DRE - (prostate exam) determined it was enlarged, which led to a urologist doing further tests to see the size of my prostate and urine flow study, then a 16 core biopsy - negative. During this time my PSA rose, which I also now know can be caused by BPH. Basically now I'm doing a 6 month follow up with urologist and quarterly visits to my Dr. I don't do any over the counter type medications.

    Sometimes just changes in our habits bring these things to our attention. Apparently, allergy meds can cause problems in some men ability to urinate.

    I did try something that seems to be relieving a lot of the symptoms of BPH called Prost-P10X, a supplement that was developed by a naturopath. Plus I'm watching how much I drink before bedtime, and trying to get more active & watching what I eat.

    I guess I would say if the problem continues, check with your doctor again, request a DRE & a PSA just to have a baseline numbers in your medical records and put your mind at ease. Remember all these commercials are trying to sell their product and maybe using inflated claims to get your bucks.

    Baseline be your own health advocate, and follow your inner sense, you know your body better than anyone else.

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    For more information, visit the Duke Health Prostate Cancer Center