Laparoscopic Prostate Removal
for Severe, Treatment-Resistant
Chronic Prostatitis


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Animal Models

chlamydia prostatitis koalaResearch into human illness commonly depends upon experimental models that can range from biochemical, to cellular, to whole animal. When it comes to prostatitis, especially chronic, the development of experimental models is constrained by the following features:

1) Mammalian prostates are anatomically diverse. While the human prostate is embryologically of several origins, it is in the mature human male an anatomically distinct organ that wraps around the urethra and is associated with paired seminal vesicles. This is not so in the dog, opposum, and rat. When it comes to specific prostate diseases, such as cancer, there are few natural models; the California sea lion is an exception.

2) Animals do not report symptoms the way humans do. Imagine trying to assess pain in a California sea lion being treated with acupuncture, bee pollen, or any other prostatitis treatment and you get the point: It is impossible to determine the effect of treatments on symptoms in animals.

That said, animals do get prostatitis. This is most obvious in reference to acute infectious prostatitis. For example, koalas are known to suffer from chlamydial prostatitis. Indeed, as of 2010, there are estimates that Australia's koalas are under threat of extinction from chlamydial infection which affect their conjuctiva (pink eye), prostates, bladders, and kidneys. It is estimated that approximately 35% of female koalas have been rendered sterile by the epidemic. Moreover, so debilitated are these furry tree-bound masupials that they have reportedly lost their will to survive (how the researchers can tell that a normally very sleepy animal suffers from melancholia is unclear). In any event, for some species, koalas apparently among them, such agents as chlamydia that can cause prostatitis are not only an aggravation but are species threatening. We will track the koala prostatitis epidemic and report on any developments.

[You can separately read about gerbil prostatitis.]
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