In technical medical jargon, “itis” means inflammation: Infiltration of white blood cells – inflammatory cells, leukocytes – into tissues. However, it is also used to describe uncomfortable conditions that may or may not be technically due to actual tissue inflammmation. So for example, "appendicitis" describes pain from the appendix; it also describes the actual infiltration of the appendix by inflammatory cells.
Clinical presentation and tissue infiltration by inflammatory cells are not synonymous. Thus, the "itis" suffix, which can refer to both, can blur meaningful distinctions. The following classification system has been developed to clarify and to facilitate communication about prostatitis:
Type I: Acute bacterial prostatitis
A painful condition typically associated with fever and chills; An condition requiring urgent use of antibiotics.
Type II: Chronic bacterial prostatitis
A recurring problem of symptoms associated with infection. Similar to but milder and more durable than type I prostatitis.
Type IIIa: Inflammatory chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS)
Not bacterial; with type IIIb accounts for most cases of prostatitis.
Type IIIb: Non-inflammatory chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CPPS)
Not bacterial; Formerly called prostatodynia.
Type IV: Asymptomatic inflammation of the prostate
Detected during evaluation and/or treatment for other conditions, e.g. bladder cancer. Click here to read more about prostate inflammation.