How effective are alpha-blocker drugs in treating BPH?

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The four main alpha-blocker drugs used to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) today have been evaluated in several placebo-controlled studies. About 70 to 80% of men who try alpha-blockers have a satisfactory response. Most doctors start men out with alpha-blockers instead of other treatments because there is a better chance a patient will respond to them, and to respond more quickly.

When a patient's symptoms are evaluated after treatment with an alpha-blocker, the results show that the drugs all have very similar effectiveness. About a 25% to 35% improvement in symptom score and a 15% to 25% improvement in peak urinary flow rate are generally seen in patients.

Studies have shown that the effectiveness of an alpha-blocker is maintained for at least three years, and there does not appear to be any increase in side effects. However, further long-term research is needed.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.