Prostatitis, an inflammation of the prostate gland, is classified in four categories. Acute bacterial prostatitis is an acute, usually gram-negative, bacterial infection of the prostate gland, generally in conjunction with acute bacterial cystitis. Chronic bacterial prostatitis is a subclinical chronic infection of the prostate by bacteria that can be localized in prostatic secretions and is the most common recurrent urinary tract infection in men. Nonbacterial prostatitis is a chronic prostatitis for which there is no identifiable organism. Prostatodynia is a condition in which the patient experiences irritation and pelvic pain on voiding; the symptoms suggest an acute inflammatory process, but there is no evidence of inflammatory cells in the prostatic secretions.
The most common complication of prostatitis is a urinary tract infection. If it is left untreated, a urinary tract infection can progress to prostatic edema, urinary retention, pyelonephritis, epi-didymitis, and prostatic abscess.
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