Prostate inflammation, known as prostatitis is relatively common, and medical science has multiple methods of intervention to treat the inflammation. Individuals who are wary of opting for standard methods often choose non-conventional practices to relieve the inflammation. Commonly referred as prostate massage, this involves massaging the prostate in an effort to offer relief from the symptoms. It is believed that this would reduce the inflammation, facilitate increased flow of urine and offer sexual gratification. However, there are certain risks associated with the procedure; subsequent sections offer detailed information including a compilation of possible prostate stimulation side effects to help individuals remain aware of the possibilities.
Overview of the condition – inflamed prostate
An inflamed prostate or prostatitis, is typically diagnosed through what is known as a DRE (Digital Rectal Examination). This involves insertion of a finger into the rectum to physically feel and determine the presence of abnormal growth or enlargement. In this procedure, the inserted finger checks the rectum and the prostate, to look for the presence of any abnormal mass or growth. Trained specialists check for the presence of hardened enlargements, and this examination typically lasts a minute. While this may be uncomfortable to many individuals, the actual examination is not known to cause pain, other than very mild or negligible pain.
Typical treatment for the condition
Typically, treatment for the condition will depend on the result of the diagnosis and the symptoms exhibited by the patient. For instance, the treatment could be targeted at the infection, or urinary complications, or it could be focused on relieving pain. Here is a quick look at these treatments.
Individuals diagnosed with bacterial prostatitis are generally recommended antibiotics. The nature of administration of the antibiotics depends to a large extent on the condition. For instance, if individuals are diagnosed with acute infections, the administration of antibiotics is intravenous. Individuals with conditions that are moderate may be administered antibiotics differently. The duration of treatment typically extends for one month or a little over a month. However, in certain conditions, the treatment may last longer, depending on the infection, that may be recurring in nature, or may have developed multi-drug resistance.
Pain is treated symptomatically along with the underlying causes. The underlying causes are treated as per the diagnosis of the condition, while the is usually managed through prescription pain relieving medications. It is necessary to seek medical advice on pain medication and avoid the urge for self-medication. For instance, combination medications with Tramadol/Acetaminophen/Paracetamol are sometimes taken without medical advice. While relief may be experienced, there is the possibility of the medication causing other undesirable effects. It is therefore necessary to regard pain from prostatitis differently, and avoid the urge to rely on OTC pain killers.
#3 Urinary complications
Urinary complications arising out of prostatitis are typically treated through alpha-blockers. The aim and the mechanism of action of the alpha-blockers is to offer relaxation to the bladder neck and muscle fibers located at the point where the bladder and the prostate are joined together. By relaxing these muscles, usual urinary issues such as difficulty in passing urine and pain while passing urine are resolved. This is one of the commonly prescribed medications for treating prostatitis and pain.
Overview of alternate practices – prostate massage or stimulation
As outlined earlier, many individuals now seek relief from alternate practices such as prostate stimulation or massage. This is intended to bring down the inflammation in addition to offering relief from the pain and discomfort of the inflamed prostate. However, it is necessary to note that documented benefits and evidence that can be accepted are not as strong as the claims of the benefits. While it is known to offer some form of sexual gratification, it is incorrect to assume that prostate stimulation can replace medically approved practices.
The actual stimulation is a lot similar to the digital rectal examination. While the DRE is primarily for the purposes of determining the presence of abnormalities, the stimulation is intended to go beyond the examination. The prostate is responsible for the production of the ‘fluid’ that encompasses sperm, and has an impact on male fertility. Comprising two sections, it is wrapped around the urethra at the portion where it is linked to the bladder. The purpose of the massage or the stimulation is to drain the prostate and involves rubbing or massaging the prostate in a manner so as to drain the fluid. The frequency of the stimulation could be twice or thrice a week initially, and the frequency is typically reduced after there are signs of improvement or relief.
In certain instances, the fluid is collected for laboratory analysis. This fluid, also known as ‘milk’, is essentially the prostatic secretion. Laboratory analysis of this fluid helps in determining the infection and also to determine the best methods to treat the inflammation/infection.
Different methods of prostate stimulation
The stimulation or the massage may be performed through different methods. For instance, it can be performed using the finger, similar to the DRE, or it can also be performed using a special prostate massaging device. The handling of the device requires specialist training and knowledge of prostatitis and it is essential to be handled with great care. In certain circumstances, the procedure can be painful, and many individuals are known to experienced and report a burning sensation. This is generally experienced after the fluid has been drained.
There is another method of prostate stimulation, wherein the massage is performed externally. This involves pressure on the area between the anus and the scrotum, known medically as the perineum. This avoids the need for insertion of the finger or any object into the body. However, this method also requires training and a careful approach to avoid complications. Other methods of stimulation include massaging the belly, in the area between the pubic bone and the navel. This form of external massage also requires adequate training and knowledge of the anatomy. External massage devices are also available to help in performing stimulation externally. The handling of these devices requires training and complete care to prevent excessive force or stimulation, or incorrect position.
Commonly associated symptoms of prostatitis
There are clear tell-tale symptoms of prostatitis and individuals are advised to seek medical attention when experiencing or observing any of the symptoms. For instance, the individual may observe traces of blood in the urine, and may experience erectile dysfunction prematurely. Additionally, during sexual intercourse, the individual may experience pain at the time of ejaculation. Other symptoms that possibly indicate the condition include difficulty when passing urine, or increase in frequency of urination, or pain when urinating. In many patients, the passing of urine may appear to be blocked or streams of urine may be weak. Other symptoms include fever that is not linked to any other condition, and possible muscle pain. Similarly, patients may also experience localized pain in the area between the scrotum and the anus (the same area that is massaged during prostate stimulation). Back pain has also been linked to the condition.
Risks associated with the alternative procedure
As mentioned above, the claims of benefits are yet to be scientifically established to be considered as a replacement for medically proven procedures. There are clear risks associated with alternative procedures and individuals are advised to seek opinion before choosing these options. it is important to note the difference between the desired outcomes – it is often intended for sexual pleasure, and it is also intended for relief from prostatitis. When performed for sexual gratification among healthy individuals, the risk levels are relatively lower. However, when it is performed as a treatment option for prostatitis, the risks are relatively higher. Here is a compilation of some of the commonly reported prostate stimulation side effects that patients are likely to encounter during and after the massage or stimulation.
- The single biggest risk associated with the massage is the possibility of the prostatitis aggravating due to the stimulation. The individual is at risk of facilitating the spread of the infection as a result of incorrect massage or undesirable effects of the force exerted on the inflamed prostate.
- Bleeding in the area around the prostate is another possible outcome of the stimulation and needs to be avoided. This could result in undesirable outcomes and complications and it is best to ensure that alternate therapy or procedures do not cause any additional risk.
- Another possible side effect of the stimulation is the outbreak of skin infections. The risk of the stimulation resulting in a serious skin infection, medically known as cellulitis is high, and it is important to be aware of this possibility.
- Patients with pre-existing hemorrhoids are likely to experience an aggravation of the condition as a result of the pressure exerted on the prostate. The location of the prostate, and the manner of stimulation result in possible pressure of hemorrhoids and this could end up in an entirely new complication.
- Patients with pre-existing prostate cancer are at serious risk of causing the caner to spread due to the stimulation. Cancerous tumors or growth are not to be exposed to pressure or any kind of stimulation as this may result in spread of the cancer.
- Insertion of special devices or insertion of the finger in the rectum for the purpose of examination or stimulation of the inflamed prostate may result in potential damage to the lining of the rectum. This could open up a n entirely new list of complications and issues that will require separate treatment.
- Stimulation of the prostate is not recommended for patients with epididymitis, as this could aggravate the condition. The condition refers to the inflammation of the tube that connects the testicles, and stimulation or massage or some pressure may result in aggravation of the condition.
- The risks of complications increase when the procedure is performed by individuals who are either poorly trained or those who do not possess enough information about the anatomy. Only those individuals who are fully aware of the anatomy will be in a position to perform the procedure with the right amount of care to prevent any unwanted side effects. It may sometimes not be possible to clearly identify the experience or the expertise of the individual performing the alternative procedure, unlike the proven protocols of conventional treatment or surgery.