Medication therapy for BPH
- Phytopharmaceuticals (plant extracts) have an anti-inflammatory and decongestant effect. They counteract oedemas and blood congestion. This results in improvements, especially in the case of irritation symptoms. Although the mechanisms by which many herbal preparations act have not been scientifically established and some are no better than placebos, they nevertheless represent an effective therapy option in the early stages.
- Alpha blockers (or to be precise: alpha-1 receptor blockers) reduce muscle tension in the prostate and neck of the bladder and demonstrably bring improvements to patients with difficulty in passing urine. Modern alpha-blockers work preferentially on the urogenital system and are better tolerated, especially with regard to dizziness and circulatory disorders.
- 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors interfere with the metabolism of the male sex hormones and reduce the volume of the enlarged prostate. However, an effect is only likely to set in after approx. 6 months.
- PDE5 inhibitor tadalafil is actually used for erectile dysfunction. Since 2012, however, it has also been approved as a drug for the treatment of prostate enlargement. Like alpha-blockers, it also reduces muscle tension in the prostate and urinary bladder and has similarly good therapeutic effects.
- Anticholinergics are mainly used to treat urge symptoms. They relax the bladder muscles and reduce the sudden urge to urinate. However, they can only be used in patients without relevant residual urine retention.
These drugs can also be used as combination therapy if the symptoms increase. However, the rate of side effects may also increase as a result.