More than 70 percent of men in their 60s have symptoms of enlarged prostate. This can cause loss of productivity, interrupted sleep and, in some cases, depression.
Common symptoms include:
▪ Frequent need to urinate both day and night
▪ Weak or slow urinary stream
▪ A sense that you cannot completely empty your bladder
▪ Difficulty or delay in starting urination
▪ Urgent feeling of needing to urinate
▪ A urinary stream that stops and starts
Treatment options for enlarged prostate range from medications to surgery, with minimally invasive options in between. Medications can be helpful in relieving symptoms for some men, but patients must continue taking them long-term to maintain the effects. Some patients may suffer side effects including dizziness, headaches, or sexual dysfunction, and some may not get adequate relief of their symptoms.
Surgical options, such as transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) or photovaporization of the prostate (PVP), are very effective. However, these typically require general anesthesia, overnight hospitalization and post-operative catheterization. Surgery can also increase the risk of erectile dysfunction or loss of ejaculation.
The Prostatic Urethral Life (PUL) procedure is a breakthrough, minimally invasive option to treat enlarged prostate. The procedure does not require any cutting, heating or removal of prostate tissue. A urologist uses the device to lift and move the enlarged prostate tissue out of the way so it no longer blocks the urethra (the passageway that urine flows through). Tiny implants are placed to hold the tissue in place, like tieback on a window curtain, leaving an unobstructed pathway for urine to flow normally again.
The PUL procedure can be performer in a doctor’s office and typically takes under an hour. The procedure has a strong safety profile with mild to moderate side effects that can include pain or burning with urination, blood in the urine, pelvic pain, urgent need to urinate and/or the inability to control the urge. Most symptoms resolve within two to four weeks after the procedure.
Enlarged prostate can wreak havoc on a man’s quality of life, so it’s important to see a physician if you think you might have an enlarged prostate.