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Health Encyclopedia

Health Condition

Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia

  • Smoking Cessation Products

    Many things motivate people to quit tobacco: being a good role model, wanting to reduce others’ exposure to second hand smoke, saving money, and wanting to feel better and improve health. Whatever your reason, keep in mind that quitting cold turkey is the least successful method for kicking cigarettes for good. Fortunately, many over-the-counter and prescription quit aids have been developed that may significantly improve your odds of success. As you figure out which quit-smoking aids best meet your needs, keep the following in mind:

    • Some treatments to stop smoking are covered by health insurance. Check with your carrier to see.
    • Some products are available both over the counter (behind the pharmacy counter) and with a prescription. Ask your health insurance about whether you need a prescription for coverage or reimbursement.
    • Try, try, and try again. People who successfully quit smoking rarely do so on the first attempt. If you’ve tried before without success, don’t be discouraged. Consider a different quit aid—the nicotine patch instead of gum, or adding in a prescription medication—and evaluate what worked and didn’t work to keep you on track during past attempts to quit.
    • Start with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist. They can offer invaluable advice and connect you with programs for people trying to quit, including support groups and other resources. Consider taking advantage of these supports, because most people do best when they combine quit-smoking products with behavior change programs.
    • When selecting a product, consider your current medications and health conditions. Consult your doctor or pharmacist if unsure about whether any particular smoking cessation product is safe for you.
    • Use nicotine replacement carefully and follow all package directions. Some people load up on patches, gum, and sprays yet continue to smoke at the same time. This can overload your system with nicotine, resulting in jitters, rapid heart rate, high blood pressure, and trouble sleeping. Some products can be used together, so ask your doctor or pharmacist what’s best for you.
    • Nicotine Patches

      What they are: Nicotine patches are similar to an adhesive bandage; you place one on your skin and it releases a constant amount of nicotine into the body while you wear it. They come in different sizes, with larger sizes delivering more nicotine.

      Why to buy: Nicotine replacement patches are available over the counter or with a prescription, and typically cost less per day than a pack of cigarettes. Patches are convenient and easy to use and can be removed during sleep to lessen the likelihood of insomnia. Due to the constant, slow release of nicotine, you are not likely to develop a craving for a patch; it doesn’t provide the intense delivery of a cigarette.

      Things to consider: Unlike smoking, which delivers a large dose of nicotine to your body within seconds, nicotine from a patch can take up to three hours to get into the body. For this reason, putting on a patch when a cigarette craving strikes is not effective. The nicotine patch reduces smoking withdrawal symptoms, such as lack of concentration and irritability.

    • Nicotine Gum

      What they are: Nicotine replacement gums are available over the counter or with a prescription and typically cost much less per day than a pack of cigarettes. Gum comes in different strengths to provide the amount of nicotine you need, based on your previous smoking habits.

      Why to buy: Gums are relatively convenient and easy to use, although you must remember to keep yours with you, because it must be chewed frequently to deliver enough nicotine to manage cravings. Though it cannot get nicotine into your body quite as quickly as a cigarette, gum delivers nicotine within minutes, which is far faster than a patch.

      Things to consider: Nicotine gum should not be used with cigarettes and you should not eat or drink for 15 minutes before or while using the gum. To chew enough gum to quell cravings, most people need between 15 and 30 pieces per day, chewed off and on for about 30 minutes. Nicotine gum should not be chewed continuously like regular gum and should never be swallowed. It is chewed a few times to break it down and then placed in between your gum and cheek for 10 or 15 minutes, chewed again for a bit, then put back into the cheek. Continuous chewing may cause stomachaches.

    • Lozenges & Lollipops

      What they are: Nicotine replacement lozenges and lollipops are available over the counter or with a prescription. They may cost a bit more than patches or gum, but typically less than a pack of cigarettes. Lozenges and lollipops come in different strengths to provide the amount of nicotine you need, based on your previous smoking habits.

      Why to buy: Some people don’t like to chew gum and prefer sucking on a candy to replace nicotine when quitting smoking. These products are relatively convenient, but you must remember to keep them on hand to use throughout the day. Lozenges and lollipops deliver nicotine within a few minutes, similar to gum.

      Things to consider: Nicotine lozenges and lollipops should not be used with cigarettes and you should not eat or drink for 15 minutes before or while they are in your mouth. Nicotine lozenges and lollipops should not be chewed or swallowed as this can lead to heartburn and stomachaches. Some people find these products irritate the mouth and throat.

    • Nicotine Nasal Sprays & Inhalers

      What they are: These products deliver nicotine through a spray into the nose or are inhaled through the mouth. They are available by prescription only.

      Why to buy: Nicotine nasal sprays and inhalers deliver nicotine as quickly as a cigarette, making them particularly helpful for people who are highly dependent on tobacco. For the person who smokes more than a pack of cigarettes per day, these products may be very effective.

      Things to consider: You need a prescription to obtain a nicotine spray or inhaler. Sprays cost about the same as gums and patches, but inhalers can be more expensive. They may be covered by insurance, which can help reduce the cost.

    • Non-Nicotine Prescription Medications

      What they are: Two different non-nicotine prescription medications may help people quit smoking by reducing the desire to smoke.. These are bupropion (brand name Zyban) and varenicline (brand name Chantix).

      Why to buy: These medications may significantly increase the quit smoking success rate beyond using nicotine replacement alone. They can be used in conjunction with nicotine replacement, further increasing success rates of quitting.

      Things to consider: Like all prescription medications, these drugs can have side effects. Many people tolerate them well, but some people experience very serious side effects, particularly from varenicline, which in some people causes hostility, agitation, anger, aggression, depressed mood, anxiety, paranoia, confusion, mania, or suicidal thoughts or actions. These can develop when a person begins taking the medication, after several weeks of treatment, or after stopping the varenicline. Insurance may not cover the cost of these medications.

  • Pedometers

    Walking is a fun and relatively easy way to get heart-healthy cardio while burning fat and calories. To maintain a healthy weight and stay active, try walking about 10,000 steps each day (approximately five miles). Do you want to lose a few extra pounds? Just step up the amount of walking each day. Whatever your goals, a pedometer is an easy way to keep track of your steps on the road to success.

    Remember to check with your doctor before starting any exercise program, especially if you are overweight or managing a health condition.

    • Basic Pedometers

      What they are:A pedometer is a small device, usually worn on your belt or clipped to a pocket, which counts how many steps you take in a day. There are two types:

      • Pendulum: Placement of a pendulum pedometer is vital for accuracy and they must remain in a vertical position on the hip or waist band.
      • Piezoelectric accelerometers: These can be placed anywhere on the front of the body, and some can even be kept in a pocket or on a neck lanyard and still provide accurate step counts.

      Most pedometers weigh only a few ounces and include a security strap to attach to clothing to prevent you from losing it.

      Why to buy: Pedometers are an easy way to track your daily exercise and overall health. Beyond counting steps, many pedometers track the distance in miles, amount of time you’ve been active, and total calories burned.

      Things to consider: When choosing a pedometer, consider the size of the display screen and the ease of reading results. Pendulum-style pedometers are generally less expensive than accelerometers, but the counting of incidental steps can be frustrating. Advantages of accelerometer pedometers are there are no moving parts and they remain silent as they record every step you take. Remember you’ll need to set your average step length or stride length in order for the pedometer to be accurate. Read the instructions on your pedometer carefully; most ask for the step length and explain how to measure it properly. Also note that some pedometers reset at midnight so you’re ready to go each morning, while others require you to manually reset them. Look at whether you need to change the batteries regularly or if it’s rechargeable through a USB connection to your computer.

    • Specialized Pedometers

      What they are: Monitors that help you measure steps plus other tracking, such as heart rate, calories burned, and so on.

      Why to buy: Pedometers with features that track heart rate and so on are handy for keeping an eye on your cardiovascular health, too. More advanced models include a memory function to save your accomplishments and some can upload data to a website, so you can easily track your results online and share with your doctors and friends.

      Things to consider: When investing in tools to support your health goals, sometimes simplest is best, but other times it can be helpful to combine goals and look for a device that will give you other helpful information, such as heart rate or trackable online information.

  • Scales

    Many people track body weight to ensure they stay in a healthy range, and for the millions of people who go on a weight-loss diet each year, a good-quality scale is an essential tool. As you choose a scale, keep the following in mind.

    • Health insurance may cover the cost of a home scale, or you may be able to use a health savings account to pay for one. Call your insurance provider to find out before making your purchase.
    • Place the scale on a flat, hard surface for the most accurate readings.
    • Heavier weight that makes it difficult for scales to shift around can be an indication of higher quality.
    • Before purchasing, weigh yourself five times in a row. If you get the same number all five times, the scale has good precision.
    • To check accuracy, compare weight from your home scale against weight on an upright scale at a doctor’s office. These numbers should be the same or very close to one another.
    • Many things cause short-term weight fluctuations, including how much and what you’ve eaten, whether you’ve exercised recently, whether you’re properly hydrated, what you’re wearing, and time of day. Weigh yourself once per week or less if you’re trying to lose weight; daily fluctuations can lead to dieting frustration.
    • Basic Mechanical Scale (Dial)

      What they are: Mechanical, or analog, scales have a dial readout displaying weight in pounds and kilograms.

      Why to buy: Mechanical scales tend to be less expensive, don’t require a battery, may come with extra large numbers for ease of use, and are the simplest to use.

      Things to consider: Over time, mechanical scales may consistently add or subtract a few pounds. Most come with a tension knob to adjust the scale as required

    • Digital Scale with Added Features

      What they are: These scales give a digital (and sometimes audio) readout of weight.

      Why to buy: Digital scales may have features to allow storing and tracking weight over time, may have the ability to switch between pounds and kilograms, and may provide voice readouts of weight. If several family members are using one scale, consider a model with a multiple-user memory function.

      Things to consider: If you’re concerned about cost and ease of use, a mechanical scale may be a better choice. Digital scales require batteries, which need to be replaced when they wear out, so consider buying a rechargeable set for best value.

    • Digital Scale with Full Features

      What they are: Digital scales with full features can measure and track body weight, body mass index, percent body fat and lean body mass, hydration status, and bone mass.

      Why to buy: These models are a good choice for those who want the most information about weight and related measures. Tracking fat and lean body mass can motivate some people to more consistently follow a healthy diet and exercise plan.

      Things to consider: Extra features often mean higher cost. These models provide an idea of fat and lean mass, bone mass, and hydration, but are not always completely accurate. You should not rely on results from these scales to make important medical decisions. Digital scales require batteries, which need to be replaced when they wear out, so consider buying a rechargeable set for best value.

References

1. Berges RR, Windeler J, Trampisch HJ, et al. Randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial of beta-sitosterol in patients with benign prostatic hyperplasia. Lancet 1995;345:1529-32.

2. Klippel KF, Hiltl DM, Schipp B. A multicentric, placebo-controlled, double-blind clinical trial of ß-sitosterol (phytosterol) for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Br J Urol 1997;80:427-32.

3. Koch E, Biber A. Pharmacological effects of sabal and urtica extracts as a basis for a rational medication of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Urologe 1994;334:90-5.

4. Metzker H, Kieser M, Hölscher U. Efficacy of a combined Sabal-Urtica preparation in the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Urologe B 1996;36:292-300.

5. Safarinejad MR. Urtica dioica for treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia: a prospective, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study. J Herb Pharmacother 2005;5:1-11.

6. Horii A, Iwai S, Maekawa M, Tsujita M. Clinical evaluation of Cernilton in the treatment of the benign prostatic hypertrophy. Hinyokika Kiyo 1985;31:739-45 (in Japanese).

7. Ueda K, Jinno H, Tsujimura S. Clinical evaluation of Cernilton® on benign prostatic hyperplasia. Hinyokika Kiyo 1985;31:187-91 [in Japanese].

8. Hayashi J, Mitsui H, Yamakawa G, et al. Clinical evaluation of Cernilton in benign prostatic hypertrophy. Hinyokika Kiyo 1986;32:135-41 [in Japanese].

9. Buck AC, Cox R, Rees RW, et al. Treatment of outflow tract obstruction due to benign prostatic hyperplasia with the pollen extract, cernilton. A double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Br J Urol 1990;66:398-404.

10. Becker H, Ebeling L. Conservative therapy of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) with Cernilton. Urologe (B) 1988;28:301-6 [in German].

11. Maekawa M, Kishimoto T, Yasumoto R, et al. Clinical evaluation of Cernilton on benign prostatic hypertrophy—a multiple center double-blind study with Paraprost. Hinyokika Kiyo 1990;36:495-516 [in Japanese].

12. Dutkiewicz S. Usefulness of Cernilton® in the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Int Urol Nephrol 1996;28:49-53.

13. Schneider HJ, Honold E, Mashur T. Treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Results of a surveillance study in the practices of urological specialists using a combined plant-base preparation. Fortschr Med 1995;113:37-40.

14. Shi R, Xie Q, Gang X, et al. Effect of saw palmetto soft gel capsule on lower urinary tract symptoms associated with benign prostatic hyperplasia: a randomized trial in Shanghai, China. J Urol 2008;179:610-5.

15. Koch E, Biber A. Pharmacological effects of sabal and urtica extracts as a basis for a rational medication of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Urologe 1994;334:90-5.

16. Bach D, Ebeling L. Long-term drug treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia—results of a prospective 3-year multicenter study using Sabal extract IDS 89. Phytomedicine 1996;3:105-11.

17. Carraro JC, Raynaud JP, Koch G, et al. Comparison of phytotherapy (Permixon®) with finasteride in the treatment of benign prostate hyperplasia: a randomized international study of 1,098 patients. Prostate 1996;29:231-40.

18. Braeckman J, Bruhwyler J, Vandekerckhove K, Géczy J. Efficacy and safety of the extract of Serenoa repens in the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia: therapeutic equivalence between twice and once daily dosage forms. Phytotherapy Res 1997;11:558-63.

19. Wilt TJ, Ishani A, Stark G, et al. Saw palmetto extracts for treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia. A systematic review. JAMA 1998;280:1604-9.

20. Bent S, Kane C, Shinohara K, et al. Saw palmetto for benign prostatic hyperplasia. N Engl J Med2006;354:557-66.

21. Barry MJ, Meleth S, Lee JY, et al. Effect of increasing doses of saw palmetto extract on lower urinary tract symptoms: a randomized trial. JAMA 2011;306:1344-51

22. Durak I, Yilmaz E, Devrim E, et al. Consumption of aqueous garlic extract leads to significant improvement in patients with benign prostatic hyperplasia and prostate cancer. Nutr Res 2003;23:199-204.

23. Carbin BE, Eliasson R. Treatment by Curbicin in benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Swed J Biol Med 1989;2:7-9 [in Swedish].

24. Carbin BE, Larsson B, Lindahl O. Treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia with phytosterols. Br J Urol 1990;66:639-41 [in Swedish].

25. Schiebel-Schlosser G, Friederich M. Phytotherapy of BPH with pumpkin seeds-a multicenter clinical trial. Zeits Phytother 1998;19:71-6.

26. Friederich M, Theurer C, Schiebel-Schlosser G. Prosta Fink Forte capsules in the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Multicentric surveillance study in 2245 patients. Forsch Komplementarmed Klass Naturheilkd 2000;7:200-4 [in German].

27. Zhang X, Ouyang JZ, Zhang YS, et al. Effect of the extracts of pumpkin seeds on the urodynamics of rabbits: an experimental study. J Tongji Med Univ 1994;14:235-8.

28. Andro MC, Riffaud JP. Pygeum africanum extract for the treatment of patients with benign prostatic hyperplasia: a review of 25 years of published experience. Curr Ther Res 1995;56:796-817.

29. Noguchi M, Kakuma T, Tomiyasu K, et al. Effect of an extract of Ganoderma lucidum in men with lower urinary tract symptoms: a double-blind, placebo-controlled randomized and dose-ranging study. Asian J Androl 2008;10:651-8.

30. Bush IM, Berman E, Nourkayhan S, et al. Zinc and the prostate. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Medical Association Chicago, 1974.

31. Fahim MS, Fahim Z, Der R, Harman J. Zinc treatment for reduction of hyperplasia of prostate. Fed Proc 1976;35(3):361.

32. Hart JP, Cooper WL. Vitamin F in the treatment of prostatic hypertrophy. Report Number 1, Lee Foundation for Nutritional Research, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 1941.

33. Bush IM, Berman E, Nourkayhan S, et al. Zinc and the prostate. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Medical Association Chicago, 1974.

34. Fahim MS, Fahim Z, Der R, Harman J. Zinc treatment for reduction of hyperplasia of prostate. Fed Proc 1976;35(3):361.

35. Platz EA, Kawachi I, Rimm EB, et al. Physical activity and benign prostatic hyperplasia. Arch Intern Med 1998;158:2349-56.

Copyright © 2021 TraceGains, Inc. All rights reserved.

Learn more about TraceGains, the company.

The information presented by TraceGains is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires December 2021.

Copyright © 2021 TraceGains, Inc. All rights reserved.

The information presented by TraceGains is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires December 2021.