While the number of prostate surgeries being performed has gone down over the years, operations for BPH treatment are still one of the most common surgeries for American men. Surgery is used when symptoms are severe or drug therapy has not worked well.
The types of prostate surgery include:
- TURP (transurethral resection of the prostate)
- TUIP (transurethral incision of the prostate)
- TUNA (transurethral needle ablation)
- TUMT (transurethral microwave thermotherapy)
- TUVP (transurethral electroevaporation of the prostate)
- Open prostatectomy.
Each of these surgeries is explained in more detail below.
TURP (transurethral resection of the prostate) is the most common surgery for treating BPH. It accounts for 90% of all BPH surgeries. It takes about 90 minutes. During TURP surgery, a spinal block is used to numb the area. The doctor passes an instrument through the urethra and trims away extra prostate tissue. This tissue is then sent to the laboratory to check for prostate cancer.
TURP generally avoids the two main dangers linked to other prostate surgeries:
- Incontinence (not being able to hold in urine)
- Impotence (not being able to have an erection).
The recovery period for TURP is much shorter as well.
TUIP (transurethral incision of the prostate) is similar to TURP. It is used on slightly enlarged prostate glands. The surgeon places one or two small cuts in the prostate. This relieves pressure without trimming away tissue. It has a low risk of side effects. Like TURP, this form of treatment helps with urine flow by widening the urethra.