The Prostate - Where is it and What does it do?

The prostate is a walnut size gland located at the exit of the bladder between the pubic bone and the rectum. It is found only in men. The normal role of the gland is to aid reproduction by liquifying the semen and helping to nourish the sperm. The fluid from the prostate contains a large amount of a substance known as Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA). The gland enlarges after puberty, stimulated by rising levels of testosterone, the male hormone. Although small compared to other organs, the prostate can cause problems later in life because of gradual further enlargement.

This condition, called benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) may lead to increased frequency of and difficulties with urination, particularly at night.

BPH is different from prostate cancer, although it shares similar symptoms. There are several treatments available to cure this non-cancerous problem using drugs to shrink or relax the gland. If symptoms are severe, surgery such as Trans Urethral Resection of the prostate (TURP) or Green Light Laser vaporisation may be required.