Should you take an erectile dysfunction drug to also ease urinary woes?

Difficulties with urination become more and more common over age 50. Often the cause is the noncancerous enlargement of the prostate gland, or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Some men have both BPH and erectile dysfunction (ED). The ED drug tadalafil is approved for use in men with both ED and BPH, but its use for urinary symptoms is less well established than standard medications. Tadalafil is not the best starting medication for treating moderate to severe BPH. Use standard medications and take ED drugs as needed. (Locked) More »

Is mercury in fish dangerous?

To reduce concerns about mercury in fish, limit consumption of higher-mercury fish to two times a week, but eat lower-mercury species more freely. (Locked) More »

How did I get a urinary tract infection?

Incomplete bladder emptying may contribute to urinary tract infections in men, but the condition is less common in men than women. Improve bladder emptying with medication if needed. (Locked) More »

Boost energy with these everyday steps

Men who feel fatigued during the day can take a few basic steps to feel better. First, medical causes of fatigue should be ruled out. The energy available on any day is limited, so stretching out tasks over the day gradually is helpful. Power naps are good as long as you do not have chronic sleeplessness. In that case, napping can worsen the insomnia. To provide steady fuel for daily activities, eat nutritious foods like whole grains and healthful protein, which are absorbed more slowly than foods composed mostly of sugar and highly processed carbohydrates, like bakery items. Dietary supplements and vitamins are not useful unless you are deficient in a key nutrient, such as iron. (Locked) More »

Screening savvy: You're likely at low risk for abdominal aortic aneurysm

A bulging abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) can be deadly, but only certain men should be checked for it with ultrasound. Men age 65 to 75 who have ever smoked are at high enough risk to make the test worth having. About 5% of men at high risk could develop an AAA. For men who never smoked and do not have a family history, the chance of having an AAA is about one in 100. Men like this who are tested are probably wasting their time. When an AAA becomes big enough, surgical repair may be advised. (Locked) More »

Better balance: Mental and physical fitness are both essential

Falls can cause major bone fractures, which are dangerous. Fear of falling can be positive if it leads to taking steps to improve balance and bone strength. Walking and other leg-strengthening exercise improves balance. Following basic guidelines for calcium and vitamin D intake are recommended to maintain bone strength. Strong bones are less likely to fracture if a fall occurs. Medications that can cause dizziness and the use of bifocals and trifocals that can blur the walking surface can also lead to falls. Making changes in the home environment, such as installing bathtub grab bars, can reduce fall risk. (Locked) More »

7 ways to make a visit to the doctor more successful

Doctor-patient relations are not always ideal. Sometimes the reason is that people do not adequately express their preferences and priorities to the doctor. Asking a doctor to provide a concrete estimate of risk and benefits, such as a statistic, can lead to better doctor-patient encounters. In some cases, it can be helpful to bring a relative or friend to the office visit. In very important medical decisions, seeking a second opinion is valuable. More »