Cause will depend on the type of prostatitis:

  • Acute and chronic bacterial prostatitis—caused by an infection. A bacteria enters the prostate. It often comes from the nearby urinary tract or rectum.
  • Chronic pelvic pain syndrome and asymptomatic inflammatory prostatitis—causes are not clearly understood.

A cause may not be found in some people.

Risk Factors

Prostatitis is more common in men who use catheters. Other factors that may increase the chances of prostatitis are:

  • Sex without the use of barriers like condoms
  • Foreskin that does not to fully draw back from the head of the penis— phimosis
  • Urethra that has narrowed
  • Prostate that has increased in size
  • Past urinary tract infections



Symptoms depend on the type of prostatitis. Many may not have any problems. Symptoms that do occur may include:

  • Need to pee often or often feel urgent need to
  • Pain or burning while peeing
  • Hard time passing pee
  • Lower belly pain or pressure
  • Pain in penis, rectum, and area in between
  • Lower back pain
  • Fever or chills
  • Problems getting or keeping erection


The doctor will ask about symptoms and past health. A physical exam will be done. To help find a cause or rule out other issues the doctor may order:

  • Urine tests
  • Prostate biopsy —small piece of prostate is removed and sent to lab



Treatment steps will be based on type.

Infectious Prostatitis

Antibiotics pills can be used to treat infections caused by bacteria. They may be given over several days or weeks. The antibiotics may be given through an IV for infections that are hard to treat.

Symptoms may be treated with:

  • Stool softeners—to ease pressure in area
  • Medicine to ease swelling
  • Pain medicine
  • Medicine to improve urine flow

Alcohol and drinks with caffeine can make symptoms worse.

Prostatitis Not Linked to Infection

Treatment may help to ease symptoms. Options include:

  • Medicine to help urine flow and bladder empty
  • Medicine to ease swelling
  • Pain medicine
  • Warm soaks
  • Prostate massages


Steps that may lower the risk of some prostatitis include:

  • Practice safe sex. Protect yourself from infections (STIs) by using a condom .
  • Empty your bladder as soon the urge happens.

Regular exercise may also help some types of prostatitis.

This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.

Edits to original content made by Denver Health.