Herbal Medicine to Treat Prostatitis
Herbal medicines usually do not have side effects when used appropriately and at suggested doses. Occasionally, an herb at the prescribed dose causes stomach upset or a headache. This may reflect the purity of the preparation or added ingredients, such as synthetic binders or fillers. For this reason, it is recommended that only high-quality products be used. As with all medications, more is not better and overdosing can lead to serious illness and death.
These herbs may be used to treat prostatitis and associated urinary tract infections:
- Bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva ursi)Acts as a diuretic and antiseptic for the urinary tract system.
- Echinacea and goldensealUsed to treat infections due to their antiviral and antibacterial properties.
- Flower pollen extractFollow product directions. It has been used in Europe for over 25 years to treat prostatitis. Flower pollen is not the same as bee pollen.
- Pellitory of the Wall (Parietaria diffusa)Has anti-inflammatory action in the urinary tract.
- Saw palmetto (Serenoa repens)Provides a tonic effect on the prostate and the urinary tract.
Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) to Treat Prostatitis
Acupuncture and TCM have been used to treat prostatitis symptoms for over 2000 years. TCM diagnosis is used to identify the specific disease pattern by analyzing symptoms, such as pain, cloudy urine, painful urination, and reduced urine flow, and to develop an acupuncture and Chinese medicine treatment plan.
Generally, prostatitis develops when the body's energy (Qi) becomes stagnant or does not flow properly. Dampness and Heat may also contribute to the condition. Acupuncture and TCM can be used to help the Qi flow throughout the body, particularly the lower abdomen and sacral region. The goals of TCM prostatitis treatment are to eliminate pain and decrease inflammation.
Acupuncture points for chronic prostatitis are located on the lower abdomen, lower back, sacrum, and legs. In some cases, electroacupuncture (involves mild electrical impulses through acupuncture needles) and moxibustion (application of heat from burning herbs to targeted areas) may also be used. Improvement often is gradual and long lasting.
Studies have shown that acupuncture and TCM are safe and effective complements to standard treatment. In one study, patients who received treatments twice a week for 6 weeks experienced an overall improvement in their quality of life, a decrease in urinary problems, and improved urinary function.