Enid Urology Associates Logo
Doctor explaining surgical options to patient

Surgical Treatment for BPH

Most doctors recommend removal of the enlarged part of the prostate as the best long-term solution for patients with BPH. With surgery for BPH, only the enlarged tissue that is pressing against the urethra is removed; the rest of the inside tissue and the outside capsule are left intact. Surgery usually relieves the obstruction and incomplete emptying caused by BPH. The following section describes the types of surgery that are used.

Transurethral Surgery

In this type of surgery, no external incision is needed. After giving anesthesia, the surgeon reaches the prostate by inserting an instrument through the urethra. A procedure called transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) is used for 90 percent of all prostate surgeries done for BPH. With TURP, an instrument called a resectoscope is inserted through the penis. The resectoscope, which is about 12 inches long and 1/2 inch in diameter, contains a light, valves for controlling irrigating fluid, and an electrical loop that cuts tissue and seals blood vessels.

During the 90-minute operation, the surgeon uses the resectoscope's wire loop to remove the obstructing tissue one piece at a time. The pieces of tissue are carried by the fluid into the bladder and then flushed out at the end of the operation.

Most doctors suggest using TURP whenever possible. Transurethral procedures are less traumatic than open forms of surgery and require a shorter recovery period. One possible side effect of TURP is retrograde, or backward, ejaculation. In this condition, semen flows backward into the bladder during climax instead of out the urethra.

Another surgical procedure is called transurethral incision of the prostate (TUIP). Instead of removing tissue, as with TURP, this procedure widens the urethra by making a few small cuts in the bladder neck, where the urethra joins the bladder, and in the prostate gland itself. Although some people believe that TUIP gives the same relief as TURP with less risk of side effects such as retrograde ejaculation, its advantages and long-term side effects have not been clearly established.

Open Surgery

In the few cases when a transurethral procedure cannot be used, open surgery, which requires an external incision, may be used. Open surgery is often done when the gland is greatly enlarged, when there are complicating factors, or when the bladder has been damaged and needs to be repaired. The location of the enlargement within the gland and the patient's general health help the surgeon decide which of the three open procedures to use.

With all the open procedures, anesthesia is given and an incision is made. Once the surgeon reaches the prostate capsule, he or she scoops out the enlarged tissue from inside the gland.

Laser Surgery

In March 1996, the FDA approved a surgical procedure that employs side-firing laser fibers and Nd: YAG lasers to vaporize obstructing prostate tissue. The doctor passes the laser fiber through the urethra into the prostate using a cystoscope and then delivers several bursts of energy lasting 30 to 60 seconds. The laser energy destroys prostate tissue and causes shrinkage. As with TURP, laser surgery requires anesthesia and a hospital stay. One advantage of laser surgery over TURP is that laser surgery causes little blood loss. Laser surgery also allows for a quicker recovery time. But laser surgery may not be effective on larger prostates. The long-term effectiveness of laser surgery is not known

References:

What I Need to Know About Prostate Problems  NIH: NIH Publication No. 08 4806 February 2008
Prostate Problems -  National Institue on Aging
Medical Tests for Prostate Problems  NKUDIC: NIH Publication No. 12-5105 January 2012
Prostate Enlargement: Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia  NKUDIC: NIH Publication No. 07-3012 June 2006
The Urologic Diseases Dictionary  NKUDIC: NIH Publication No. 10-4376 May 2010

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NKUDIC)

National Institutes of Health
NIH Publication No. 07-3012
June 2006

AUAFoundation - The Official Foundation of the American Urological Association

NKDEP - National Kidney Disease Education Program

NKUDIC - National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse

Kidney and Urologic Diseases A-Z list of Topics and Titles

our Patients are our #1 Priority

"Great Care"

"Dr. Worthen is an excellent doctor. He has cared for my husband since 2005, when he had kidney cancer. He has always been very professional and caring. And my husband is still cancer free. Great care."

Patient of Dr. Rodney Worthen • Enid, OK

"Good at Explaining Illness to Me Where I Could Understand"

"Found him to be good at explaining my illness to me where I could understand it. I was seen for kidney stones. He was able to get me right in and get me scheduled for surgery right away."

Patient of Dr. Jarrett D. Kruska • Enid, OK

"Always makes sure I understand everything"

"Been seeing Dr. Colvert for the last 5 years. Always good to explain each procedure I've had done and always makes sure I understand everything. Seems to be up on the latest procedure for my prostate problems"

Patient of Dr. James Colvert • Enid, OK

Contact Us Today!Call Today: (580) 233-3230