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My husband has prostate problems

Posted by Walt Thompson on Monday, 09 February 2015 in Your Questions Answered - NEW! 0 Comments

Dear Dr. Thompson,

My husband is having problems with his prostate gland. This is a self-diagnosis. Leakage, frequent urination, other symptoms. He is 60 and has been a vegan for the past 30 years. Is there something special we can do to treat it? We have not seen a doctor because of finances and usually they just prescribe drugs.


rostate problems are the bane of “old” men!! Yes, it is not uncommon for men age 60 to develop an enlarged prostate. Normally one would expect a vegetarian to be less susceptible, but that is not always true, unfortunately.

I have included excerpts from the book, Health Smart here. The entire contents of the book are available on line for other questions you may have.

There are definite indications for medical evaluation and help. Yes, they are expensive, but sometimes helpful when nothing else is. Unfortunately, prostatic enlargement (BPH) can be life threating when the bladder outlet is obstructed. This can rarely cause life threatening infections, damage to the kidneys, and the development of hernias, among other things. In addition, the symptoms may be caused by some other serious condition including cancer of prostate and other places. Therefore, the patient and family must weigh the cost against the potential benefit, both short term and long term. How much risk does one want to, or need to take? Of course, complications and emergencies can multiply the cost many times over. On the other hand, one must also consider end-of-life concerns. How important is it to stay alive and what am I willing to go through to do so? At age 60 the answer may very well be different than at some older age.

Included here are some of the usually recommended herbal agents for BPH. In my experience I have been disappointed in that they are not always as helpful as one might wish. Certain medications now available on the market are quite effective and may often delay or prevent surgical interventions. Cost wise they will probably be comparable to herbal agents.

I would be amiss to fail to recommend medical evaluation in an effort to confirm the diagnosis. Whether or not that is possible or practical, I would begin alternating hot and cold sitz baths (instructions below). If you have ready access to some of the herbal agents noted below, you may wish to try them. None are likely to work overnight. It may take a number of days before either herbs or medications reach full benefit.

Symptoms of enlarged prostate may sometimes be aggravated by infections of the urine. Drinking unsweetened cranberry juice is often recommended for such infections.

It is always appropriate to seek divine guidance and healing when considering health issues (as with other issues). He is faithful Who has promised.

I hope these suggestions are helpful to you.


Walter Thompson MD


G) Prostatism (BPH—benign prostatic hyperplasia)

The prostate is the source of many male sex organ problems. Since most of the problems involving the seminal vesicles and glands around the prostate are affected by conditions of the prostate, management and care are essentially the same as for the prostate and will not be considered separately.

BPH is the most common malady of the prostate among adult males. The cause is not known, but is probably related to lifestyle practices. (Prostate enlargement is much less commonly found among men eating a plant based diet and practicing otherwise health promoting lifestyle habits.)

1. Symptoms

Symptoms include: difficulty passing one’s urine, straining to void, slowing of stream, dribbling, incomplete emptying, and frequency of voiding.

Blood and clots sometimes occur in the urine.

When obstruction occurs, there may be pain in bladder and/or kidney areas, often with fever and flu-like symptoms of infection.

In this condition, the gland develops many firm, fibrous nodules. Symptoms occur when the enlarging nodules encroach upon the tube passing through it from the bladder to the outside. When this happens, the urine flow slows, or stops, or may be difficult to start. Oftentimes, because of the obstruction, the bladder only partially empties, causing one to sense a frequent need to urinate. This problem is often more noticeable during the night when the kidneys are more active and produce more urine. Whenever urine remains in the bladder because of obstruction, there is a tendency for it to get infected. When infection is present, the person may have burning discomfort with voiding and the flow may be even slower. Pain in the bladder and kidney areas and fever often also occur. Prolonged, untreated obstruction may cause other problems to the bladder and kidneys as well.

2. Treatment of Prostatism

The most common indication for treatment is obstruction of urine flow. When the stream is slow or dribbling or when one must strain to pass water; when the bladder fails to empty causing frequency of voiding and the need to void several times during the night, or when one develops urinary tract infections, it is time to seriously consider treatment.

If treatment is not begun for the above symptoms, the urine flow may suddenly be completely obstructed, necessitating emergency measures to empty a painfully distended bladder. The resulting high pressures and/or infections in the urinary system may damage the kidneys. Constant straining to void, often unconsciously, may contribute to the development of hernias in the groin.

3. Options of treatment

The time-honored treatment of an enlarged prostate is surgical. This may be done through an incision in the low abdomen or behind the scrotum. Or more commonly today, various techniques for reducing the size of the gland are now done by passing special instruments through the penis.

Often, surgery may be avoided or delayed by medications prescribed by a physician that help to shrink the gland and allow passage of urine.

Herbal remedies: Herbal remedies are sometimes very effective. Saw palmetto and pumpkin seeds are a couple of frequently recommended examples. (Section VII, chapter 9, Y, 3, b).

A much more economical, but unconfirmed source is said to be sugar cane pulp and soybeans.

Of course, infections when present, must be treated with appropriate antibiotics.

In addition to these, it is well to begin applying the principles of a health-promoting lifestyle program (Section VI, chapters 110). This should consist of a diet composed mostly of unrefined plant foods (avoiding food products from animal sources, as well as most refined foods like sugar, white flour, oils and fats, etc.); a good exercise program(preferably in the out-of-doors in the sunlight and fresh air) (Section VI, chapters 3A3B3C); elimination of all alcohol, tobacco, coffee in all forms, and other drugs (Section VI, chapters 8, 9)drinking at least 1 1/2 liters of plain, clean water daily (Section VI, chapter 5A); and ample amounts of sleep and “free” time for rest and recuperation (Section VI, chapter 4)A living faith in God will make all of these changes possible (Section VI, chapter 10).

Applications of alternating hot and cold water may also provide relief. This may be done by sitting in a tub of hot (not burning) water for 15–20 minutes after which cold water is poured over the pelvis. The procedure should be repeated several times daily. Hot fomentations (hot, moist towels) to the pelvis followed by cold applications may also be helpful (Section VII, chapter 7, N, 4).

4. Indications for professional help

Professional consultation is indicated when symptoms fail to respond to the above measures and cause multiple nighttime voidings, high-grade obstruction, or infection of the bladder and kidneys.

H) Cancer of the prostate

Cancer of the prostate is the most common cancer among men in many parts of the world. Unfortunately, prostate cancer does not usually give any signs of its presence until it has become very large or has spread to other organs.

1. Symptoms

The first symptoms may be difficulty passing one’s urine, passing blood in the urine, or the presence of pain, either in the pelvis or in the bones (symptoms of advanced disease). For this reason it is generally recommended that all men more than 50 years of age should have regular periodic prostate exams. A physician can examine the prostate by placing a gloved finger in the rectum.

In addition, blood tests checking for PSA (prostate specific antigen), and acid phosphatase may also be helpful in determining the presence of cancer of the prostate (more specific tests are being developed). Though other non-cancerous conditions can cause an elevated level of both PSA and acid phosphatase, the tests are very useful for screening and follow-up.

If these exams suggest cancer, small amounts of tissue can be removed from the prostate for examination by using a special biopsy needle passed through the rectum, or with instruments passed through the penis.

2. Treatment

Treatment of prostate cancer depends upon the size of the cancer and whether or not it has spread to other organs. Urological specialists frequently recommend surgical excision or radiation therapy for optimum treatment of prostate cancer.

Hormones to suppress tumor growth are also available and often very effective.

Radiation therapy is often helpful in relieving pain in bones containing prostate cancer.

Not all cases of prostate cancer are the same. Sometimes it is very aggressive and kills rapidly; at other times it appears to lie almost dormant for years and never kill. Unfortunately, at the time of this writing, no good tests have been identified to reliably distinguish between the two.

Estrogen hormones and phyto-estrogens are often helpful in suppressing cancer growth (Section VII, chapter 9, Y, 3).

Sunlight and/or Vitamin D are related to a reduced risk of prostate cancer in some studies and are recommended for both prevention and treatment. (Extra high doses of vitamin D supplements may increase rather than decrease the risk of prostate cancer.)

An abundance of evidence in recent years suggests that practicing HEALTH SMART principles may both prevent and treat cancer of the prostate. Cruciferous vegetables appear to be very valuable for the prevention and spread of prostate cancer, whereas dairy products appear to be contributory to the development and growth of cancer of the prostate (Section VI, chapters 110).

3. Indications for professional care

As with other cancers, professional help is almost always indicated. Management decisions ought to be carefully considered in discussion with the chosen health-care provider.

I) Prostatitis (infection of the prostate)

1. Symptoms

Like infections elsewhere in the body, prostatitis may cause pain, fever and malaise. Pain is frequently noted in the pelvis or low back and may or may not be associated with urinary symptoms—burning urination and urinary frequency and urgency. Infections may be of sudden, acute onset and respond rapidly to treatment, or they may be recurrent or persistent. The diagnosis of infection is suspected by the history and findings upon exam. It may be confirmed by urinalysis or examination of prostatic secretions obtained by massage of the gland.

2. Treatment

Hot sitz baths or hot fomentations to the pelvis (SectionVII, chapter 7, N, 4).

Treatment of prostate infections consists of optimum lifestyle practices (Section VI, chapters 110).

Recent medical research confirms the value of foods high in antioxidants when preventing or treating infections. Accordingly, ample use of fresh fruits and vegetables are recommended.

Saw palmetto, pumpkin seeds, and garlic may also be helpful in alleviating symptoms (Section VII, chapter 9, Y, 3, b).

3. Indications for professional help

If these measures fail to bring rapid improvement, medical consultation and possible use of antibiotics may be advisable.

Herbs for prostate

Saw Palmetto: 50–100 grams daily of fresh fruit or as decoction.

Pumpkin seeds: Eat a handful of seeds 2–3 times daily, raw or cooked.

Phytosterol flower pollen extract called Cernitin and Prostaphil, sugar cane pulp, soybean products as a regular part of diet.

Evening Primrose: 2–4 grams daily as capsules.

Other Hormone modulators—licorice, skullcap, ginseng, chase tree, partridge berry, lavender oil, nettle—as infusions (tea), capsules, etc.

Turmeric when used in the diet.

Cruciferous plants in diet.

 Contrast baths

Now, we have talked about a hot bath and a cold bath, now we look at both employed in the same treatment. This is called a contrast bath and the greater the contrast, the greater the reaction. This treatment is based on the principle that by alternate vasodilatation and vasoconstriction brought about by means of hot and cold applications, circulation is greatly improved and waste products are carried away effectively. It is sort of a vascular gymnastics session that not only improves the function of the vessels present, but stimulates collateral circulation as well.

Since we have already discussed the importance of circulation, the physiologic benefits of this treatment should be readily apparent. More oxygen, more nutrients, more white blood cells to an infected area, and you have heightened healing. This is an excellent treatment for infections, 2–6 treatments a day being a good goal to shoot for.

Contrast baths may include the whole body, or any portion of it. It is ideal for healing chronic wounds, ulcers, etc.

1. Indications

Besides reducing inflammations, other indications include: strains, sprains, and other traumas, poor circulation, congestion and indolent ulcers, osteoarthritis, and anytime you want to increase circulation to a diseased area. It can be used nicely for pelvic afflictions.

2. Contraindications

Contraindications are relative and temperatures must be adjusted to meet the patient’s present condition. One would not use hot water on the feet of patients with diabetes or other vascular disease limiting circulation. On the other hand, by using lower temperatures, one can obtain the desired contrast effect without doing damage to the tissues.

3. Equipment needed

Two containers large enough to fully immerse the body part to be treated. (A shower is great when giving a contrast bath to the whole body.)

Bath thermometer

Thick towels

Way to add hot water

Ice for cold bath if desired

4. Procedure

Let’s say a friend of yours has a swollen hand. It is red, painful and feels warm to the touch. Fill a container with very warm water; about 105 o to 110 o F. Fill another with cold water. Both containers should be large enough for your friend to place the whole hand and lower arm in the water. Have him/her place the hand in the warm water and leave it there for 3 minutes. After the 3 minutes, move the hand to the cold water for 30 seconds. During this time you need to add more hot water to the first container, bringing it up 3 o or 4 F. Then back into the hot water with the hand for another 3 minutes. Ice might be added to container two now. After 3 minutes, the hand goes back to the cold water while more hot water is added to container one, again raising the temperature 3 o to 4 F. The hot water can eventually be raised to 115 o -120 o F or to patient tolerance.

For a contrast sitzbath, place two very large containers in a bathtub containing only enough water to immerse the pelvis and hips. Being in the tub ensures spillover just goes down the drain and not all over the floor. You can place the containers on a raised surface like a plastic step or similar object. The key is preventing the water container from falling along with its human cargo. It is best to place the hot container at the end of the tub where the faucets are located for easy hot water replenishment. After three minutes in the hot, have the patient stand, turn around and sit in the cold water for 30 seconds. As with the hand tub, hot water is added at this point so when the patient stands and turns around, a warmer reception awaits him.

The contrast sitzbath is especially beneficial for ailments affecting the abdomen and the reproductive system, inflammations, pelvic congestion in males and females, cramps, hemorrhoids, menstrual problems, and kidney and intestinal pains. A variation is the hot sitzbath that can be used for the same ailments without the extreme cold that may cause some people discomfort.


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