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Prostate glands are located at the bottom of the bladder and wrapped around the urethra, (which carries urine out of the bladder) and the ejaculatory duct (the tube that transfers semen from the testes to the urethra). The main function of the prostate is to produce fluid that supports sperm function. Prostatitis is inflammation of the prostate gland.

Prostatitis can be caused by bacterial and non bacterial infections. The most common type of bacteria to cause bacterial prostatitis is E. coli – bacteria that normally lives in the bowel. E. coli prostatitis often affects older people with enlarged prostates. Other bacteria, especially sexually transmitted bacteria may also cause prostatitis.

Signs and Symptoms

  • Pain at the base of the penis, around the anus, just above the pubic bone and in the lower back
  • Pain may radiate to the penis and testes
  • It may also be painful to pass a bowel motion
  • Increased urgency to pass urine
  • Passing urine more frequently or blood in urine
  • Fever and chills
  • Painful ejaculation
  • General lack of energy
  • Muscular pain


Prostatitis is usually treated with a course of antibiotics prescribed by a doctor. Non-bacterial prostatitis can be treated in a number of ways that aim to help painful symptoms; however, it is not always cured.


  • Use condoms and lube for anal sex
  • Avoid holding on to urine for long periods
  • General well-being

If experiencing enlarged prostate, such as difficulty starting or stopping urine flow, taking a long time to empty the bladder or frequent urination, seek advice from your local sexual health clinic or a doctor.