Prostatitis for men: a complete guide

This is a fairly common condition in men.

But what does the term mean and how does it affect your daily life?

What is prostatitis?

Prostatitis, an inflammation affecting the prostate, a small gland near the base of the bladder in men, can result from bacterial infection or other non-infectious causes. 

It is generally divided into several types according to its origin and clinical presentation, including acute bacterial prostatitis, chronic bacterial prostatitis, chronic non-bacterial prostatitis (also known as chronic pelvic pain syndrome) and asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis.

Types of prostatitis

There are four types of prostatitis, each with specific causes and symptoms.

Acute bacterial prostatitis

The acute prostatitis is characterized by a bacterial infection of the prostate, causing sudden and severe inflammation. Symptoms often include high fever, chills, pelvic pain, painful and frequent urination, and urinary disorders or urinary tract infection.

Chronic bacterial prostatitis

Chronic bacterial prostatitis is similar to acute prostatitis, but symptoms are less severe and last longer. Recurrent bacterial infections may be the cause of this form of prostatitis.

Chronic non-bacterial prostatitis

Chronic non-bacterial prostatitis, also known as chronic pelvic pain syndrome, is the most common type of prostatitis. In this case, there is no obvious bacterial infection, but symptoms persist for at least three months. Patients may experience pelvic pain, urinary disorders, pain during ejaculation, as well as sexual dysfunction.


Asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis presents no noticeable symptoms, but inflammation of the prostate is detected during medical examinations.

Causes of prostatitis

Urinary tract infections

Prostatitis can be caused by a variety of reasons, including bacterial infections, immune system disorders and non-infectious risk factors. The most common causes of prostatitis include:

  1. Bacterial infections: Acute or chronic bacterial prostatitis are mainly caused by bacterial infections. Bacteria from the urethra or rectum can enter the prostate, causing inflammation. Pathogens commonly involved in these infections include Escherichia coli (E. coli), Klebsiella, Proteus and Enterococcus.
  2. Non-infectious factors: In some cases, prostatitis can be caused by non-infectious factors, such as immune system disorders, neurological problems or hormonal imbalances. These factors can lead to inflammation of the prostate without the presence of bacterial infection.
  3. Urethral reflux: The reflux of urine from the urethra into the prostate can also be a cause of prostatitis. This can occur due to anatomical disorders or bladder dysfunction, allowing urine to flow back into the prostate and irritate tissues.
  4. Trauma: Trauma or injury to the pelvic region can damage the prostate and cause inflammation. This can occur as a result of accidents, falls or invasive medical procedures.
  5. Lifestyle factors: Certain lifestyle factors can also increase the risk of prostatitis. These include a sedentary lifestyle, unbalanced diet, excessive alcohol consumption, smoking and exposure to toxic substances.

It should be noted that prostatitis can result from a combination of these factors, and in many cases the exact cause of prostatitis can be difficult to determine.

Prostatitis symptoms

Prostatitis, a complex medical condition, is emerging as a significant health challenge in men, captivating the attention of healthcare professionals through its subtle yet impactful manifestations. At the heart of this problem lies the prostate, a vital gland of the male reproductive system. When prostatitis unfolds, it unveils an array of enigmatic symptoms, undermining the physical and psychological well-being of those afflicted. The warning signs can take a variety of forms, from stabbing pelvic pain to persistent urinary problems, insidiously insinuating themselves into a man's daily life. From burning sensations when urinating to inexplicable backache, these subtle but pertinent clues underline the crucial need for early vigilance.

 However, it is not limited to the physical aspect; it can also cast a shadow over the individual's emotional well-being, sometimes resulting in dull anxiety and an impact on quality of life. This complex interconnection between physical symptoms and psychological implications calls for a holistic approach to understanding and managing this delicate condition. By addressing the nuances of prostatitis, it becomes imperative to deploy multidisciplinary efforts to shed light on the little-known aspects of this pathology and offer optimal relief to men facing its challenges.


Pelvic pain

Pelvic pain is one of the most common symptoms of prostatitis. It can be felt in the area between the anus and the genitals. Pain can range from mild to intense, and may be present all the time or appear intermittently.

Pain or burning during urination

Some men with prostatitis feel pain or a burning sensation when they urinate. This can make urination uncomfortable and painful.

Frequent need to urinate

Prostatitis can lead to increased urinary frequency. Men with prostatitis may feel the need to urinate frequently, even if they don't have a large quantity of urine to pass.

Fever and chills

In the case of acute bacterial prostatitis, a prostate infection can cause fever and chills. This is the body's reaction to the infection.

Pain during intercourse

Some men with prostatitis may experience pain during intercourse. This can have a negative impact on sex life, leading to reduced sexual desire.

Erectile problems

Prostatitis can also cause erectile dysfunction in some men. These problems may be temporary or persistent, depending on the severity of the prostatitis.

Pain in the lower back or testicles

Some men with prostatitis may experience pain in their lower back, testicles or the area between the testicles and the anus. This pain may be dull or sharp.

Treatments for prostatitis

This is an inflammation of the prostate, which may be due to infection or other causes. Treatment depends on the underlying cause. Here are some general treatment options, but it's important to consult a healthcare professional for personalized advice.

Antibiotic treatment If it's caused by a bacterial infection, antibiotics are often prescribed. The duration of treatment can vary from a few weeks to several months, depending on the severity of the infection.

Anti-inflammatory drugs Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can be used to reduce inflammation and pain.

Alpha-blockers These drugs can help relieve urinary symptoms, such as difficulty in urinating. They work by relaxing the muscles of the prostate and bladder neck.

Heat therapy Heat therapy (such as hot baths) can help relieve symptoms.

Physiotherapy Specific exercises can help relieve pelvic pain associated with prostatitis.

Lifestyle change Sometimes, changing certain habits can help manage symptoms, such as avoiding alcohol and caffeine, exercising regularly and practicing relaxation techniques to manage stress.

Finally, if chronic non-bacterial prostatitis (the most common form) is suspected, a multidisciplinary approach that may include pain management therapies, behavior modification, pelvic physiotherapy and sometimes psychological or psychiatric consultation may be required.