Benign prostatic hyperplasia, an enlarged prostate gland, is a common condition that affects more than 500 million aging men worldwide. One in four men experience symptoms of an enlarged prostate by the age of 55, and that rate increases to 90 percent of men over the age of 70. Chronic lower urinary tract symptoms associated with BPH can cause loss of productivity and sleep, depression and decreased quality of life.
Medication is often the first line of therapy, but relief can be inadequate and temporary. Side effects can include sexual dysfunction, dizziness and headaches, prompting many patients to quit using the drugs. For these patients, the classic alternative is surgery that cuts or heats prostate tissue to open the blocked urethra. Although effective, patients have to “earn” their symptom relief after a difficult period of irritative voiding symptoms and catheterization.
Even the “gold standard” surgery, TURP (transurethral resection of the prostate), can leave patients with permanent side effects such as urinary incontinence, erectile dysfunction (ED) and, very commonly, retrograde ejaculation (dry orgasm).
UROLIFT® GENTLY OPENS URETHRA WITHOUT INCISIONS
A new, less-invasive surgical system called UroLift® from Neotract is designed to treat BPH without incisions to the urethra. To date, the new approach is showing excellent results in preserving male sexual function — which traditionally has been a significant problem with trying to surgically treat BPH. The UroLift system is designed to open the urethra directly without applying incisions, surgical resection or thermal injury to the prostate. Obstructive prostate lobes are transurethrally pushed aside and small permanent UroLift implants hold the lobes in the retracted position, thus opening the urethra while leaving the prostate gland intact. UroLift is an outpatient surgical procedure approved by the FDA in the United States. The procedure usually takes 15–20 minutes in the operating room to complete. It typically is done on an outpatient basis, though at times the procedure can be done in the office.
A key benefit of UroLift is there is no chance of incontinence with this procedure, as with other procedures on the prostate. That’s a significant point because when the vast majority of men hear “prostate surgery,” they immediately associate it with a significant likelihood of urinary incontinence.
Adverse reactions associated with the UroLift treatment system are comparable to other minimally invasive surgical therapies as well as standard cystoscopy. The most common adverse events reported during clinical trials included pain or burning with urination, blood in the urine, pelvic pain, urgent need to urinate, and the inability to control urine because of an urgent need to urinate. Most symptoms were mild to moderate in severity and resolved within two to four weeks after the procedure.
The Urolift procedure is available at St. Mary Outpatient Surgery Pavilion. For more information, please call (760) 946-5920.
This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your health care professional's instructions.