Sperling Prostate Center

What is Prostatitis?

Diagnosing Prostatitis at Sperling Prostate Center

Prostatitis is an inflammation or swelling of the prostate gland. It may be caused by an infection, but sometimes the usual diagnostic tests are unable to identify a specific organism. This is a problem looking for a solution, especially if the condition is chronic (repeatedly comes back).

Prostatitis symptoms include:

  • Pain in the pelvic region (genitals or deeper in the groin) or lower back
  • Difficult or painful urination
  • Sexual dysfunction or painful orgasm
  • General health problems (flu-like feelings, fatigue, depression)
  • An elevated or rising PSA

Diagnosis is Problematic

Prostatitis can defy accurate diagnosis. It overlaps with other prostate conditions. One of the most common tests, a basic urinalysis, fails to detect 85% of bacteria strains that can cause prostatitis.

In standard practice, a doctor takes a detailed description of symptoms and any other problems going on at the same time. Lab analysis includes urine, blood, and prostate fluid. A digital rectal exam is performed, though this only examines one surface of the gland. A physical urological exam may also be done. If results are inconclusive, a diagnosis of Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome (CPPS) is often assigned, especially if pain or urinary symptoms have been present for 3 of the previous 6 months. Finally, if PSA is elevated, a biopsy may be ordered to rule out prostate cancer.

The Sperling Prostate Center Solution

New hope: A 3T multiparametric MRI before a biopsy helps correct diagnosis.

Thanks to our pioneering use of 3T mpMRI – BlueLaser™, the Sperling Prostate Center is a recognized leader in identifying prostate diseases. Our 3T mpMRI – BlueLaser™ is superior to CT and ultrasound in defining abnormal tissue in the prostate and its surroundings. When interpreted by our expert readers, it reveals prostate abnormalities that distinguish prostatitis from benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or prostate cancer.

The type of imaging we offer using our powerful, state-of-the-art MRI uses specialized sequences, or parameters, that reveal distinctive characteristics of prostatitis such as cellular differences, and blood flow that distinguishes inflammation vs. prostate cancer.

During a scan for prostatitis, if an area is detected that is suspicious for prostate cancer, a targeted in-bore mpMRI-guided biopsy using minimal needles can be done to rule out prostate cancer.

Daily Choices That Make a Difference

Nutrition DOs and DON’Ts

Note: Discomfort can be linked with bowel problems, so if you’re prone to bowel irritation, avoid foods that cause it.

DO’s DON’T’s
  • Mediterranean diet is best since it’s non-inflammatory
  • Veggies – focus on cruciferous ones like cauliflower, broccoli, and kale to reduce inflammation
  • Fruits – avoid acidic fruit if discomfort increases
  • Opt for plant protein over animal protein
  • Seek out high-fiber foods
  • Aim for organic, if possible, to reduce toxicity
Trigger foods can include:
  • Hot peppers and other spicy foods
  • Wheat or gluten
  • Acidic foods and drinks
  • Caffeine
  • Alcohol
  • Any food allergy that irritates the bowel


Note: There is nearly universal agreement on the information below, though research into supplements produces sometimes conflicting results. Always discuss supplements with your doctor before using.

Okay to Consider Should be Avoided
  • Quercetin
  • Graminex pollen extract
  • Phytotherapy (Quercetin + pollen extract)
  • Turmeric/curcumin
  • Stinging nettle
  • Pygeum (to help with urinary symptoms)
  • Remember: Always buy supplements from reputable companies and discuss with your doctor before trying any
  • Supplements with a mixture of herbs or active ingredients. It’s best to try a single ingredient at a time to see if it works for you.
  • Don’t fall for advertising claims without checking the credibility of the source

Lifestyle Tips

Exercise Stress Management
  • Strengthen core muscles
  • Stretch frequently to release tension
  • Regular aerobic exercise (to decrease inflammation, reduce blood sugar, and balance hormones)
  • Yoga or tai chi
  • Breath work (may also help manage discomfort)
  • Relaxation and down time
  • Constructive ways to vent/talk out negative feelings with someone you trust
  • Get adequate sleep
  • Massage
  • Join a support group
Mind & Heart Environment
  • Embrace a positive attitude
  • Meditation or mindfulness exercises
  • Do something creative
  • Follow your bliss
  • Deepen intimacy with those you love
  • Replace personal care products that contain chemicals (soap, deodorant, etc.) with natural products
  • Replace toxic household cleaners with natural products
  • Eat organic

Questions Patients Ask Us

Are you worried about prostatitis?

Schedule a free consultation with Dr. Sperling to map out a diagnosis and treatment plan all personalized for your unique circumstances.

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