By Kambiz Tajkarimi, MD
Urology Surgical Consulting, PC / Penile Implant Institute of Greater Washington
Are you among Greater Washington’s tens of thousands of dedicated professionals in information technology (IT), computer engineering and/or programming? Are you nailed to your seat for hours typing away and staring at your computer screen? You want to impress your boss how you get the stuff done without taking breaks? Do you take bathroom breaks only before exploding?
The short advice is: Don’t do it. You don’t want to get “IT prostatitis”. Get up and take breaks every hour. Don’t sit for too long. Urinate at least every hour. Drink 80-100 oz of water every day, especially in the mornings (you are dehydrated the most after eight hours of sleep).
So many men suffer from pelvic pain, pressure, burning with urination and other vague symptoms. They all have IT prostatitis. Some even have “IT prostatitis 2.0”, the real bad one. Our bodies are not built to withstand hours of sitting on our butts and holding our weight on our pelvic structures.
The prostate gland, as you can see in this diagram, is exactly where you are sitting for hours. It is a chestnut shaped sexual organ that produces seminal fluid and is a passageway for urine from the bladder to the penis. It is a very emotional organ. It doesn’t like to be squashed by your body. And it will fight back by getting inflamed, infected and painful, sometimes for months, and even years.
It has been called “the forgotten prostate disease”, yet prostatitis leads to more than two million visits to doctors’ offices in the United States each year. Visits to doctors for symptoms of prostatitis are exploding in the world, and specially in the DC region. It can lead to chronic pain and even infertility.
The best treatment for prostatitis is to prevent it from occurring in the first place. Treatment options include oral or IV antibiotics, anti-inflammatory medication, alpha-blockers, and/or anti-oxidants. Sometimes prostate massage by a urologist, semen culture to identify resistant organisms, and even surgery is necessary to improve the symptoms. Take my advice seriously: get a standing desk, prostate cushion for your chair, drink lots of water, take frequent bathroom breaks and stop sitting on your butt all day. You will thank me later.