As a youngster, you probably never imagined dealing with an enlarged prostate when you grew up. A little boy’s mind is normally consumed by what fascinates them in the present moment. In fact, we’re almost certain that you weren’t even concerned with what a prostate was back then! At the same time, the diagnosis of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) forces a man to further his understanding of something that’s going to impact the rest of his life.
Although a severe condition may cause you to look back on all of the decisions that played a role in your current diagnosis, we encourage you to stay in the present moment. Stay focused on the positives. Understanding what BPH is may seem like a priority, but finding a specialist to help you overcome its symptoms is just as important. There are plenty of treatment methods available to help you combat the condition. Learning what each procedure entails will help you make a healthy decision about your future.
Finding Answers to a Sensitive Topic
Before we go into some of the disadvantages of a TURP operation, we wanted you to know that you’re not alone. BPH affects almost 3 million men every year as the risk of being diagnosed increases with age. Tons of men have questions and concerns, but the vulnerability of the condition causes them to hide their symptoms. Moreover, they might put off going to the doctor for BPH testing simply out of fear of knowing. It’s OK, we understand how a diagnosis can be intimidating. Dealing with change is hard enough as it is. a
Going to the doctor is a big first step and you should be applauded for your willingness to seek help. But, being diagnosed and receiving a recommendation for treatment doesn’t eliminate the problem. Many men are still left concerned with the outcome. Although they now know what’s burdening them, they want to validate their diagnosis and confirm that the doctor’s recommendation is their best option. Some of the frequent questions our patients ask are:
- Can BPH cause constipation?
- Why does BPH cause incontinence?
- What is a TURP operation and does it fix BPH? Are there other options?
- And why does BPH cause the much dreaded and worst two words in the universe, ED (erectile dysfunction)?
Getting answers may make you feel better, but more information can also result in additional concerns. There aren’t many medical conditions that are as uncomfortable for men to talk about than BPH or prostate issues. Discussing what’s going on below the waist is never ideal. Even though this is a sensitive topic, men shouldn’t be afraid to find a resolution. Things can grow worse and symptoms can become unbearable. This is why we take pride in our educational approach and building relationships with our patients.
We want you to be comfortable and confident in the wellness decisions you make. There are answers and solutions available, and the advancement of medical technology has given patients the ability to easily find a preferred method of care. Knowing what each option entails will help you understand what suits you best and what to expect after the procedure.
What Is a TURP Operation?
In the past, TURP operations were the go-to treatment for BPH by medical providers across the country. Today, they’ve slowly been phased out as more doctors embrace PAE and other alternatives to TURP surgery. Although the information is typically considered power, this is one of those areas where additional insight may be difficult to stomach.
If you prefer to review your options with Dr. Rami, you can always schedule a free consultation at our endovascular center in Peoria, Arizona. Although a TURP operation isn’t something we support at DVVI, we’re committed to providing men with accurate information regarding surgical procedures and treatment options. Nonetheless, let’s take a look at what the procedure actually entails.
In a TURP (transurethral resection of the prostate) procedure, a wire is inserted through the head of the penis so doctors can wind the wire through to the urethra. Once this tube is in place, the doctor will begin to remove any excess tissue or inflammation. If you’re already experiencing discomfort, then you probably won’t enjoy what we have to say next.
The Disadvantages of TURP Surgery
A TURP procedure is physically uncomfortable. As you can imagine, this type of insertion isn’t the most comfortable approach. Aside from the anticipation of the procedure causing discomfort, the after effects can also be unsettling. Although TURP surgery can sometimes lead to significant improvements in symptoms, it can also have dramatic side effects that have prompted patient and physician concerns. Multiple TURP surgery side effects have been documented over the years.
For example, recovery from this surgery can be a long, extensive process that lasts anywhere from six to eight weeks. During this recovery period, patients may be plagued by a wide range of troubling consequences, including difficult and painful urination. It’s also common that urethra structures are damaged and the urethra narrows as a result of TURP. One of the more common complications involves a partial or total loss of bladder control. But, the prostate doesn’t only limit urinary functions.
The sexual side effects of TURP tend to be the biggest concern amongst men with BPH – and rightfully so. Some men have experienced a postoperative result that includes retrograde ejaculation (the inability to ejaculate semen out of the penis) and erectile dysfunction (ED). For some, these surgical outcomes eventually resolve over time. For others, incontinence and ED can present them with lifetime challenges.
Although over 90% of practitioners “almost always counsel about the possibility of EjD,” not all fully disclose. Make sure you’re thoroughly educated on the postoperative risks of a TURP procedure before you follow through with treatment. One the damage has been done, there isn’t much you can do about the result.
A TURP Procedure Is No Longer the Only Option
Until recently, TURP surgery was the only option for many men. However, technological advances have opened up better and less invasive options. These alternatives to TURP surgery will be discussed in more detail below.
PAE As A Great Option for BPH
The best alternative to emerge is Prostate Artery Embolization (PAE). Using new technological breakthroughs, a surgeon or interventional radiologist uses microspheres to cut blood supply to the prostate, effectively reducing the size of the previously swollen prostate. Unlike the unpleasant process of a TURP operation with the dreaded wire, PAE is minimally invasive. The microspheres used during a PAE procedure are painlessly threaded through the femoral or radial artery.
Because of this, the PAE procedure has significantly fewer complications than TURP. Within one week, men are back on their feet, pursuing what’s fascinating them in the present moment. Aside from eliminating the anxiety before a TURP operation, they aren’t frustrated with continued symptoms or additional complications once the procedure is complete. Patients that choose PAE also do not experience the long-term risks of incontinence and erectile dysfunction that we mentioned above. Any additional concerns are easily mitigated by your surgeon or interventional radiologist.
Overall, PAE is a better option. Not only does the procedure have lower direct in-hospital costs, but the hospital stay is much shorter in comparison to TURP. In the medical field, procedural success is commonly measured through readmission rates. When men select PAE over more invasive options, everybody wins!
Seek An Experienced Professional For BPH
A diagnosis of an enlarged prostate can be scary and intimidating for many men. Ignoring a malfunctioning prostate gland is very difficult to do. When something is wrong, men are frequently reminded and oftentimes frustrated with the result. Although BPH affects a sensitive part of the body, there’s no need to be ashamed of your limitations. Every day, more and more men are learning how to cope with their symptoms.
We hope that talking about this common problem encourages more men in Phoenix to seek the treatment they deserve. The invasiveness and pain involved with TURP surgery are no longer your only choice. Take the time to pursue alternatives to TURP surgery. Fixing an embarrassing problem doesn’t have to involve the risk of additional complications. While every procedure has its pros and cons, the straightforwardness of PAE should allow you to look forward to a pleasant recovery.
At the same time, it’s important men make sure the Vein and Vascular specialist they visit has the proper accreditations. Not all doctors are equally qualified to carry out a successful PAE procedure. We encourage you to research the practice you’re considering. Many vascular centers are simply interested in offering the lowest-priced services to potential patients.
Dr. Rami, on the other hand, understands the importance of focusing on his patient’s needs, both in the short and long term. By pursuing board certifications and industry-leading accreditations that aren’t necessarily required, he’s been able to equip his endovascular center with state-of-the-art technology and experienced staff that cares. Dealing with BPH can be disheartening, but we want you to know you’re in good hands at DVVI.