What is acute
Acute prostatitis happens when your prostate gland becomes suddenly
inflamed. The prostate gland is a small, walnut-shaped organ located at the
base of the bladder in men. It secretes fluid that nourishes your sperm. When
you ejaculate, your prostate gland squeezes this fluid into your urethra. It
makes up a large portion of your semen.
Acute prostatitis is usually caused by the same bacteria that cause urinary
tract infections (UTIs) or sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). Bacteria can
travel to your prostate from your blood. It can enter your prostate during or
after a medical procedure, such as a biopsy. It can also be caused by
infections in other parts of your genitourinary tract.
are the symptoms of acute prostatitis?
If you have acute prostatitis, you may develop:
- a fever
- pelvic pain
- painful urination
- blood in your urine
- foul-smelling urine
- a decreased urinary stream
- difficulty emptying your bladder
- difficulty starting to urinate
- increased frequency of urination
- painful ejaculation
- blood in your semen
- discomfort during bowel movements
- pain above your pubic bone
- pain in your genitals, testicles, or rectum
What causes acute
Any bacteria that causes UTIs can cause prostatitis. Bacteria that commonly
cause UTIs and prostatitis include:
- Proteus species
- Klebsiella species
- Escherichia coli
Some bacteria that cause STDs, such as chlamydia and gonorrhea, can also
cause acute bacterial prostatitis. Other conditions that can lead to acute
bacterial prostatitis include:
- urethritis, or inflammation of your urethra
- epididymitis, or inflammation of your epididymis, which
is the tube that connects your testicles and vas deferens
- phimosis, which is the inability to pull back the
foreskin of your penis
- injury to your perineum, which is the area between your
scrotum and rectum
- bladder outlet obstruction, which can occur due to an
enlarged prostate or stones in your bladder
- urinary catheters or cystoscopy
is at risk of acute prostatitis?
Factors that increase your risk of UTIs, STDs, and urethritis also increase
your risk of acute prostatitis. For example, these risk factors include:
- not drinking enough fluids
- using a urinary catheter
- having multiple sexual partners
- having unprotected vaginal or anal intercourse
Other risk factors include:
- being over the age of 50
- having a UTI
- having a history of prostatitis
- having certain genes that can make you more susceptible
- having pelvic injuries from bike riding or horseback
- having orchitis, or inflammation of your testicles
- having HIV
- having AIDS
- being under psychological stress
is acute prostatitis diagnosed?
Your doctor will likely start by asking questions about your medical
history. They’ll also conduct a physical examination.
They’ll probably conduct a digital rectal examination (DRE). During this
procedure, they’ll gently insert a gloved and lubricated finger into your
rectum. Your prostate is located in front of your rectum, where your doctor can
easily feel it. If you have acute bacterial prostatitis, it will likely be
swollen and tender.
During a DRE, your doctor may also massage your prostate to squeeze a small
amount of fluid into your urethra. They can collect a sample of this fluid for
testing. Laboratory technicians can check it for signs of infection
Your doctor may also feel the lymph nodes in your groin, which may be
enlarged and tender.
They may also conduct or order additional tests, such as:
- a blood culture to rule out bacteria in your blood
- a urinalysis or a urine culture to test your urine for
blood, white cells, or bacteria
- a urethral swab to test for gonorrhea or chlamydia
- urodynamic tests to learn if you have problems emptying
- a cystoscopy to examine the inside of your urethra and
bladder for signs of infection
is acute prostatitis treated?
Your doctor will likely prescribe antibiotics for four to six weeks to treat
acute bacterial prostatitis. Your treatment may last longer if you have
recurrent episodes. The specific type of antibiotic will depend on the bacteria
causing your condition.
Your doctor may also prescribe alpha-blockers to help relieve symptoms.
These drugs relax your bladder muscles. They can help decrease urinary
discomfort. Examples include doxazosin,
Your doctor may also recommend over-the-counter pain relievers, such as
acetaminophen and ibuprofen.
Your doctor may advise you to adjust your daily habits to help relieve
symptoms. For example, they may encourage you to:
- avoid bicycling or wear padded shorts to decrease
pressure on your prostate
- avoid alcohol, caffeine, and foods that are spicy and
- sit on a pillow or donut cushion
- take warm baths
is the long-term outlook for people with acute prostatitis?
Acute prostatitis usually goes away with antibiotics and lifestyle
adjustments. In some cases, it may recur and become chronic prostatitis. Ask
your doctor for more information about your specific condition, treatment
options, and outlook. They may advise you to take certain steps to lower your
risk of recurring infections.