Jose is a 55-year-old Hispanic, male, migrant worker who speaks limited English. He presented to the emergency room with complaints of edema of the scrotum, urinary retention, and hematuria. He does not have any pertinent past medical history. He is married and has five young children. He states he has been having problems for a while but delayed seeing the doctor because of his work schedule and limited money. The doctor performs a digital rectal examination in the office and finds that Jose’s prostate is enlarged.


This case study examines the presentation of Jose, a 55-year-old Hispanic male migrant worker, who presents with symptoms of edema of the scrotum, urinary retention, and hematuria. The examination reveals an enlarged prostate, indicative of a potential prostate disorder. The purpose of this analysis is to explore the possible causes of his symptoms, focusing on prostatic enlargement, and to consider appropriate diagnostic tests and treatment options.


Prostatic enlargement, also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), is a common condition characterized by non-malignant growth of the prostate gland. BPH is predominantly observed in older males and can cause urinary symptoms, such as increased frequency, urgency, nocturia, and incomplete emptying (Roehrborn, 2011). Hematuria, the presence of blood in the urine, can be an additional manifestation of BPH (Litwin & Saigal, 2012). Although BPH is not typically associated with scrotal edema, some cases have been reported in the literature (Culig et al., 2019). It is crucial to explore the potential underlying causes of Jose’s symptoms, as well as consider diagnostic tests and suitable treatment options.


The initial presentation of edema of the scrotum, urinary retention, and hematuria in Jose can indicate different underlying conditions. However, the finding of an enlarged prostate on digital rectal examination suggests that BPH is the most likely cause of his symptoms.

BPH is a progressive condition, and its manifestations can vary from mild to severe. Common urinary symptoms associated with BPH include urinary frequency, urgency, nocturia, weak urinary stream, and intermittency (Roehrborn, 2011). The presence of urinary retention in Jose’s case suggests the possibility of bladder outlet obstruction, which can occur due to prostatic enlargement. Additionally, the hematuria reported by Jose could be a result of the prostate gland compressing the urethra, causing mechanical irritation and bleeding.

Age is a significant risk factor for the development of BPH, with prevalence increasing with advancing age. The prevalence of BPH in Hispanic males is reportedly lower than in other ethnic groups, such as Caucasians and African Americans (Boswick et al., 2011). However, this does not exclude the possibility of BPH in Jose’s case, particularly considering the presence of an enlarged prostate on examination. Limited English proficiency may have also contributed to a delay in seeking medical attention, further emphasizing the importance of addressing cultural factors and language barriers in healthcare access and communication (Sentell & Braun, 2012).

Diagnostic tests play a crucial role in confirming the diagnosis of BPH and ruling out other potential causes of Jose’s symptoms. Initial laboratory investigations may include a complete blood count (CBC) to assess for signs of infection or anemia, a urinalysis to evaluate the presence of blood or infection, and a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test to assess for prostate cancer. Imaging studies, such as transrectal ultrasound or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), may provide further information on the size and structure of the prostate gland and exclude other conditions, such as prostatic malignancy.

Treatment options for BPH can be classified into medical management and surgical interventions. The choice of treatment depends on various factors, including symptom severity, patient preferences, and the presence of complications. Medical management typically involves the use of alpha-blockers or 5-alpha reductase inhibitors to relieve symptoms and improve urinary flow (Roehrborn, 2011). Surgical interventions, such as transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) or laser prostatectomy, may be considered for patients with more severe symptoms or complications, such as recurrent urinary retention or recurrent urinary tract infections.


In conclusion, Jose’s symptoms of edema of the scrotum, urinary retention, and hematuria, in combination with an enlarged prostate found on digital rectal examination, are suggestive of BPH. While BPH is more commonly observed in older males, it is essential to consider this diagnosis even in Hispanic males and take into account cultural and language barriers that may delay seeking medical attention. Appropriate diagnostic tests, including laboratory investigations and imaging studies, should be conducted to confirm the diagnosis and rule out other potential causes. Treatment options, including medical management and surgical interventions, should be considered based on symptom severity and patient preferences.

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