Learn About Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)
What is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)?
Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is an enlarged prostate gland. Normally the size of a walnut, the prostate gland sits below the bladder and surrounds the urethra (the tube that moves urine from the bladder out of the body).
BPH is not cancer and it does not raise your risk for prostate cancer.
Who is at risk?
The likelihood of developing an enlarged prostate increases with age. More than 50% of all men in their 60s and as many as 90% aged 70-89 years old have some symptoms of BPH.
What does the research say?
- The risk of BPH increases with age after 40, with more than 50% of men in their 60s reporting prostate problems1
- Black and Hispanic men are at a higher risk2
- BPH runs in the family. Men with male relatives who have enlarged prostates are more at risk for developing symptoms1
- Conditions associated with heart disease, like diabetes, are also linked to BPH1
- Obesity increases the risk of BPH, while exercise has been shown to lower your risk3
- Patel, N. D., & Parsons, J. K. (2014). Epidemiology and etiology of benign prostatic hyperplasia and bladder outlet obstruction. Indian Journal of Urology, 30(2): 170-176. doi: 10.4103/0970-1591.126900
- Krista, A. R., Arnold, K. B., Schenk, J. M., Neuhouser, M. L., Weiss, N., Goodman, P., Antvelink, C. M., Penson, D. F., & Thompson, I. M. (2007). Race/ethnicity, obesity, health related behaviors and the risk of symptomatic benign prostatic hyperplasia: results from the prostate cancer prevention trial. The Journal of Urology, 177(4): 1395-1400
- Parsons, J. K., Sarma, A. V., McVary, K., & Wei, J. T. (2013). Obesity and benign prostatic hyperplasia: clinical connections, emerging etiological paradigms and future directions. The Journal of Urology, 189(1): S102-S106. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.juro.2012.11.029