Prostatitis seems to be a catchall diagnosis varying anywhere from clear cut acute bacterial infection of the prostate gland with burning on urination, fever, positive cultures, and response to antibiotics, through recurrent nagging symptoms that can include pain on urination, urine flow obstruction, sexual dysfunction, blood in the urine, and chronic pain syndromes affecting the pelvic region.
Prostatitis constitutes perhaps 10% of urology practice, and is often frustrating to patients and physicians alike.
Symptoms are shared with BPH and prostate cancer, which are more clear-cut entities with standard diagnosis and treatment.
Prostate and bladder stones can give similar symptoms on rare occasions. STDs can be a diagnostic consideration in people with multiple sexual partners, and with international travel, we mustn’t forget parasitic infections.
From the patient’s standpoint, the important thing is to find a good urologist who can sort out the symptoms and find a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.
Please refer to the following Cleveland clinic article for a more orderly discussion.