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Medical therapy for benign prostatic hyperplasia: a review
Division of Urology, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Oct  2015 (Vol.  22, Issue  51, Pages( 7 - 17)
PMID: 26497339


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    Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is a common disease that affects men as they age. Historically the treatment has been primarily surgical in nature, but over the past 25 years significant advances in medical therapy have been made, sparing some men from interventional procedures.


    This article highlights the current state-of-the-art with respect to medical therapy for lower urinary tract symptoms secondary to BPH (BPH-LUTS) including a review of landmark studies and recent areas of research in the field.


    Alpha blockers are considered first line when treating BPH-LUTS in men with small prostates and 5-alpha reductase inhibitors (5-ARIs) are recommended in men with large symptomatic prostates. While, phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE-5) inhibitors are the mainstay of erectile dysfunction therapy, they also play a role in treating BPH-LUTS. If men have persistent irritative storage symptoms after first line BPH therapy then overactive bladder (OAB) medications can be added or substituted. Combination therapies can be used to provide short term symptom relief with long term disease management.


    Medical therapy remains the main treatment option for men suffering from BPH-LUTS. Numerous medical options are available that can be tailored to meet the individual?s needs depending on their personal and prostate characteristics. An algorithmic approach, as we have defined within this article, can be a helpful guide to this decision-making process.