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How is Prostatitis Treated?

The treatment for prostatitis depends on the type you have.

If an antibiotic is prescribed, it is important to stay on schedule and finish the whole prescription. Unless your doctor tells you to stop, continue to take your antibiotics. Even if your symptoms go away, don't stop taking the drugs early.

Acute Bacterial Prostatitis

For acute bacterial prostatitis, you'll need to take antibiotics for at least 14 days. You may be admitted to the hospital and given antibiotics through an IV (into your vein). If you have trouble urinating, your health care provider may use a tube (a catheter) to drain your bladder. Almost all infections that start suddenly are cured with this treatment. Sometimes, you'll need to stay on the antibiotics for as long as 4 weeks. If one antibiotic doesn't work, your health care provider will try others.

Chronic Bacterial Prostatitis

For chronic bacterial prostatitis, you'll need to take antibiotics longer, most often for 4 to 12 weeks. About 3 in 4 of chronic bacterial prostatitis cases clear up with this treatment. Sometimes the symptoms return and antibiotics are needed again. For cases that don't react to this treatment, long-term, low dose antibiotics are used to ease the symptoms.

CP/CPPS

CP/CPPS may be caused by bacteria that isn't easy to find but could still be cured by antibiotics. This is why you may be given antibiotics even if your tests don't prove that bacteria are the cause. Your health care provider will decide if you should stay on antibiotics. Patients who don't have an infection may feel better while taking antibiotics because many antibiotics can also reduce inflammation.

Other Treatments

Your doctor may offer other treatments to help you feel better. Some health care providers order drugs called alpha-blockers. These drugs help relax the muscles around the prostate and the base of the bladder. You may also be given anti-inflammatory drugs, pain medications, muscle relaxants, or plant extracts. Prostatic massages can help ease pressure by draining fluid from the prostate ducts while specialized physiotherapy may relax the nearby muscles.

Hot baths, hot water bottles, or heating pads may help ease pain. If sitting is painful, a donut pillow or inflatable cushion may help. Relaxation exercises may also ease some of the symptoms. Your health care provider may suggest that you stop eating and drinking some irritating foods. These may include spicy or acidic foods and caffeinated, fizzy or alcoholic drinks. Your health care provider may also suggest that you stop things that can make your pain worse (such as bicycle riding).

In rare cases, surgery on either the urethra or prostate may be needed. There must be a specific problem with the body, such as scar tissue in the urethra, for prostatitis surgery to work.