Considering Surgery for your Enlarged Prostate?
Over the past decade, urologists and men with obstructing urinary symptoms secondary to BPH have been introduced to a number of surgical alternatives for managing this condition.
Men who suffer from BPH on certain occasions become “slaves” of their bladders. You wake up 2 or 4 times a night to go urinate. Everywhere you go the first thing you look for is the restroom. You enter a mall and as soon as you open the door, you ask yourself or your partner “Where’s the restroom?”. Some have managed to keep a urinal in their cars/trucks and they just relief themselves while driving. And others just realize they have issues when they listen to younger people urinating beside them in a rest room and realize how strong the other person’s stream is in comparison to theirs. If you have encountered any of these issues, I’ve got news for you… you will benefit from seeing a urologist.
BPH is a prevalent disease affecting approximately 50% of men older than 50 years old and up to 90% of men after the age of 85. Doctors may give you recommendations on lifestyle modifications like ‘stop fluid intake 2 hours before you go to sleep’. Others might prescribe you oral medications. But the big question remains….
How do I know if I need surgical treatment?
There are many factors that need to be considered in order to know if and what type of surgical management will be of benefit. These are:
1. The size of the prostate: There are different treatment options that can be offered depending on whether the prostate is relatively small or very large
2. The shape of the prostate: Every prostate have two lateral lobes. However, some men develop an additional median lobe that protrudes into the the bladder and may increase the complexity of a given procedure.
3. Presence of complications: if you are having complications that can potentially affect your overall health, you need surgical management.
4. The degree of bother: you can have a ‘huge’ prostate but if you have no complications and are not bothered, you do not need surgical treatment. On the other hand, if you have bothersome symptoms you will benefit from a procedure
When should I call a specialist?
Every week we have more and more patients with BPH asking for less invasive procedures and expect the same outcomes as the more ‘classic’ alternatives. Some have more or less side effects and a more rapid return to their “pre-procedure” daily activities. Now we even have procedures that are minimally-invasive and can be performed in the office without the need of hospitalization or general anesthesia!
If you suffer from obstructing urinary symptoms and wish to be evaluated by a specialist, start oral medications, or finally be able to stop medications once and for all, we invite you to call our office and schedule an appointment. If you want to hear more about the surgical or procedure options that are available for you, call us! Our goal is to guide you through your journey towards a healthier lifestyle and an improved quality of life.
This article was authored by Dr. Jonathan Clavell. Dr. Clavell is an urologist who specializes in men’s health including erectile dysfunction, low testosterone, Peyronie’s Disease and BPH.