UroLift: Minimally Invasive Treatment for BPH
By: Dr. Gary Bellman on November 11, 2016
In September 2013, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved marketing for the first permanent implant to increase urine flow in men over the age of 50 with BPH. In this minimally invasive procedure—called the UroLift system, the physician pulls back and stitches enlarged prostate tissue that is compressing the urethra and causing BPH symptoms.
Prior to marketing approval, the FDA reviewed data from a number of clinical trials—including one study that involved 64 men aged 53-83, and another involving more than 200 men between 49- 86 years of age who were treated using the UroLift system. According to the FDA, the procedure was successfully completed in 98 percent of cases and resulted in a 30 percent increase in urine flow, a decrease in BPH symptoms, and an improved quality of life during the 2 years after treatment. UroLift was approved through the FDA's de novo process for low- to moderate-risk medical devices and procedures that aren't similar to another approved device.
About the Procedure
UroLift can be performed under local or general anesthesia, in a doctor’s office or hospital. The urologist inserts a delivery system-- rigid sheath, cystoscope through the urethra and determines the precise area(s) of prostate tissue to be pulled back. Then, he/she inserts a small needle into the sheath and uses it to stitch the tissue. The number of implants (stitches) varies, depending on the size and shape of the obstructive tissue. Following the procedure, the instruments and delivery system are removed.
Recovery time is said to be usually quick, and temporary catheterization-- which often is used in other BPH treatment procedures may not be necessary. Studies show that this procedure preserves sexual function, and it is not known to cause serious side effects, retrograde ejaculation, or permanent erectile dysfunction.
Minor side effects include:
• Blood in the urine (hematuria)
• Decreased urine flow
• Incomplete emptying of the bladder
• Pain/burning during urination
• Urinary urgency
Rare complications, however, can occur when the UroLift procedure—or any surgery—is done using general anesthesia, especially in older men or those with serious medical problems.
For questions or to inquire about your options for relief of BPH, please inquire within **
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