What does the UroLift operation involve?
The UroLift System procedure revolves around tiny prostate retractors, which are permanently implanted to hold the enlarged prostate lobes open. This relieves prostate obstruction and opens the urethra directly without cutting, heating, or removing prostate tissue, typically without the need for a postoperative catheter.
Which patients are suitable for the UroLift procedure?
All men with the symptoms of an enlarged prostate are suitable for the procedure. However, optimal results for Urolft are achieved in men who:
- Do not have a prostate larger than 60cc and
- Do not have a prominent middle lobe of prostate. Middle lobe refers to an extension of prostate growth into the bladder. It is preferable not to have this middle lobe growth when doing the UroLift procedure.
To ensure that you are suitable to have the UroLift it is common practice to investigate pre-operatively with an ultrasound of prostate and also flexible cystoscopy.
If investigations show that there is a prominent middle lobe or if your prostate is excessively large then other surgical alternatives such as TURP will be more advisable.
What are the benefits of the UroLift procedure?
Benefits of the UroLift procedure include:
- Short duration of anaesthesia- Typically the whole procedure takes only about half an hour and hence the time under anaesthesia is proportionally short.
- Provides rapid relief of symptoms – patients experience symptom relief as early as two weeks post procedure.
- Recovery time is short – patients can return back to normal activities and work within 2 to 3 days post procedure.
- Preservation of sexual function- ejaculation as normal is preserved after a UroLift procedure. TURP and Green light laser prostatectomy result in loss of ejaculation.
- Can be done as a day procedure – given the short duration of anaesthesia and no requirement of catheter post procedure the UroLift can potentially be done as a day procedure in hospital.
What are the side effects of the UroLift procedure?
Adverse events if they occur are mild to moderate in severity. The side effects include:
- Pain or burning with urination
- Blood in urine
- Pelvic pain
- Urgent need to urinate
Most of the adverse post-operative symptoms resolve within 2 to 4 weeks after the procedure. If you have had a flexible cystoscopy before the procedure, it will feel like that procedure though the feelings be a little stronger and may last a little longer.
How long does the UroLift last?
The UroLift System is intended to be permanent. The clinical studies have shown the results to be consistent to 5 years. Clinical data has proven that the UroLift System treatment is safe and effective.
The UroLift procedure is a safe, effective and minimally invasive procedure which involves placement of tiny prostate retractors. It can be done as a day procedure with minimal recovery time post operatively. Studies have shown the beneficial effects to be durable for many years post procedure. The side effects are nil to minimal in most men.