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Q-Urol is a dietary supplement for treating chronic prostatitis. It is made by the same manufacturer as Prosta-Q and shares most of the latter’s active ingredients. However, Q-Urol differs from Prosta-Q by its delayed-release formulation. What are the active ingredients in Q-Urol and how do they affect the prostate? How does Q-Urol differ from Prosta-Q and what advantage does the delayed-release formulation provide? Is Q-Urol even effective? Read on to find out.
by Brad Chase
Q-Urol is an oral, dietary supplement specially formulated for the treatment of chronic pelvic pain syndrome (also known as chronic prostatitis). It is produced by Farr Laboratories.
This herbal supplement is advertised as more potent and effective than Prosta-Q, another prostate health formulation also manufactured by Farr Laboratories. According to the manufacturer of both supplements, Q-Urol is a time-release formula, unlike Prosta-Q.
Time-release technology, also known as controlled-release, is a special technique employed in drug production that allows pills, tablets and capsules to disintegrate and dissolve gradually over an extended period of time. This ensures the drug formulated in this way is assimilated slowly and steadily into the bloodstream.
One striking advantage of time-release technology is that a single pill containing a large dose can be safely taken in place of multiple pills at frequent intervals while still producing the same or even better efficacy.
Q-Urol contains a patented formulation of clinically proven herbs and minerals used for promoting prostate health and relieving symptoms associated with prostate problems.
One of the herbs used in this herbal formulation is bee pollen extract. This traditional remedy has been shown in a number of studies to improve prostate inflammation and relieve urinary difficulties.
In addition to bee pollen extract, Q-Urol also contains activated quercetin, a powerful antioxidant flavonoid derived from plants. This flavonoid is also useful in the treatment of prostatitis because of its anti-inflammatory properties.
The recommended dosage of Q-Urol is two tablets of the supplement taken two times daily with meals.
After symptoms have improved, users can then switch to a maintenance dose of one tablet per day. However, Q-Urol is not likely to be effective if symptoms do not show any signs of improvement after 2 to 3 months of usage.
First time users of Q-Urol may notice slight tingling in the lower extremities after taking the first dose of the product. This adverse effect is expected to resolve after a while as the body develops tolerance to the supplement.
When Q-Urol is taken on an empty stomach, users may experience nausea. It is, therefore, important to follow the instructions spelled out on the label of the product in order to avoid preventable adverse reactions such as nausea and gastrointestinal discomfort.
Because the product contains bee pollen extract as an active ingredient, some users may observe allergic reactions after taking the herbal supplement.
In addition, mild cases of headaches, stomach pains and irritation have been reported with the use of Q-Urol.
Generally, most major complaints from users of the herbal product have so far been mild. This shows that Q-Urol is safe and well-tolerated by most users.
Quercetin, an active ingredient of Q-Urol, is known to interact with quinolone antibiotics such as ciprofloxacin. Therefore, it is expected that Q-Urol will also interact with such antibiotic medications and these should not be taken along with the herbal product.
Because of the anticoagulant properties of quercetin, Q-Urol should not be combined with other blood thinners such as warfarin and NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) like ibuprofen and aspirin. Combining these medications can result in severe internal bleeding.
Furthermore, users who are allergic to bee pollen should strictly avoid taking Q-Urol because of its bee pollen content. This can cause very serious anaphylactic reactions for those allergic to the pollen. The hypersensitivity reactions triggered are rapid and can result in death if not immediately treated.
Therefore, if any allergic reaction, such as swollen face, slurring of speech or increased heartbeat, is observed after taking the herbal product, it should be treated as a medical emergency before the hypersensitivity reaction makes breathing difficult.
Lastly, children, pregnant and nursing women should avoid the product except when recommended by a doctor. This is because there are no safety studies done on to help determine whether Q-Urol is safe for these groups.
Quercetin is probably the most beneficial and important ingredient included in Q-Urol. It is a bioflavonoid naturally found in vegetable, grains and fruits.
As a powerful antioxidant, quercetin can help protect prostatic cells from destruction by mopping up free radicals and reactive oxygen species. In fact, it is metabolized into very potent antioxidant compounds such as isorhamnetin, tamarixetin and kaempferol in the body.
However, its anti-inflammatory action is the most relevant therapeutic property beneficial to the prostate. This is especially helpful in the treatment of chronic prostatitis, a form of prostate inflammation.
It works by interfering with the biochemical pathways that lead to inflammatory reactions in the body.
Specifically, quercetin inhibits inflammatory cytokines (such as IL-8) linked to chronic prostatitis.
The effectiveness of quercetin in the treatment of chronic pelvic pain syndrome (also known as chronic prostatitis) was examined in a study published in the World Journal of Urology.
For this study, 30 participants suffering from chronic prostatitis were randomly given either 500 mg of quercetin or the same dose of placebo daily for a 4-week period. The participants were evaluated based on the NIH chronic prostatitis symptom index (NIH-CPSI).
After the 4-week study duration, participants who received quercetin showed significant improvement compared to those given placebo.
Lastly, quercetin is believed to possess modest antifungal and antibacterial properties. These properties are likely to also contribute to its effectiveness in improving the prostate health and treating infections in the urinary tract.
Pollen extract is also included as an ingredient in Q-Urol because of its therapeutic effect on the prostate and urinary tract. The pollen extract used in the production of this herbal product is obtained from bee pollen.
Bee pollen is a mass of pollen gathered from flowers by worker bees during pollination. This mass of pollen is usually pounded into granules together with nectar and honey.
An extract made from this bee pollen is a powerhouse of nutrients.
However, the composition of nutrients in bee pollen extracts is not fixed and may differ from batch to batch.
Because bee pollen contains most of the major nutrients, it is used in naturopathic medicine to improve general health. Furthermore, bee pollen extract is used to treat diverse health conditions including prostate problems.
The result of a 1993 study published in the British Journal of Urology showed that pollen extract was effective in the treatment of chronic prostatitis syndrome.
Researchers of this study recruited 90 patients suffering from chronic prostatitis syndrome. The patients were given pollen extract for a period of 6 months.
After the duration of the study, significant improvement was observed in 78% of the patients. In addition, the extract was also found to be well tolerated by 97% of the patients.
The role of calcium in prostate health has generated a lot of controversies over the years. Even currently, many experts still do not agree on the effects of calcium on the prostate.
While some studies showed an increased risk of prostate cancer in men with high calcium intake, the results of other studies indicate otherwise.
Although calcium, like any other essential mineral, contributes to a person’s general health, the reason for its inclusion in this prostate health supplement is not clear. Therefore, until there is a proper understanding of the role of calcium in prostate health, it can be assumed that it plays a complementary role in Q-Urol rather than having a direct effect on the prostate.
Bromelain is primarily included in Q-Urol to aid the absorption of other ingredients in the herbal product especially quercetin. The protease enzymes present in bromelain are responsible for enhancing the bioavailability of these ingredients.
However, it plays some minor roles in improving prostate problems as well. One of bromelain’s benefits to the prostate is its anti-inflammatory action. It can inhibit the secretion of pro-inflammatory chemicals in the body and, therefore, help prevent or reduce chronic prostatitis.
In addition, along with its anti-inflammatory property, bromelain can help protect the urinary tract and prostate from bacterial infection.
Although there are claims that papain possesses anti-inflammatory properties, there are no sufficient evidence to support these claims.
Therefore, the sole purpose of including papain as an ingredient in Q-Urol must be to support bromelain in improving the absorption of quercetin.
The other ingredients included in Q-Urol are microcrystalline cellulose, stearic acid, hypromellose, silicon dioxide, magnesium stearate, maltodextrin.
These compounds are biologically inactive excipients but they are also important components of the herbal product.
For example, microcrystalline cellulose and silicon dioxide are used as anti-caking agents and also included for their excellent compression property which is useful during the process of pressing the formulation into pills.
Hypromellose, on the other hand, forms the coating of Q-Urol tablets. But, more importantly, it functions as the time-release agent responsible for delaying the release of the product’s active ingredients into the bloodstream.
Maltodextrin and stearic acid are used as fillers and binders in Q-Urol to bulk up the supplement and hold the ingredients together as well.
During the processing of the supplement, magnesium stearate is used as a diluent (also known as anti-adherent) to prevent the powder from sticking to mold press or the tablets from sticking together.
Although Q-Urol contains a blend of active ingredients beneficial for general health, it contains very few ones proven specifically to improve prostate health.
Of the ingredients in Q-Urol, only quercetin and pollen extract have been proven to improve prostate problems in clinical studies.
Besides, these two proven ingredients in Q-Urol are not even as popular and potent as herbs such as saw palmetto or stinging nettle in the treatment of prostate problems. Furthermore, none of the ingredients in this supplement can provide a dramatic improvement in the symptoms of chronic prostatitis.
In truth, Q-Urol may not be effective in patients with more aggressive cases of chronic prostatitis. But patients with mild prostate problems may find the herbal product helpful especially for relieving symptoms such as pelvic pain.
Q-Urol does have one thing going for it: the time-release or delayed-release technology. But this can only provide an advantage over its sister product, Prosta-Q (that advantage is even doubtful considering the fact that Prosta-Q contains saw palmetto, a herb known for treating prostate problems).
While some users may report improvements in their symptoms, there is really nothing to indicate that Q-Urol can substitute or even supplement conventional prostate drugs or natural supplements used for treating prostate problems.
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