As a man grows older, his prostate becomes bigger—a condition known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). As this occurs, the prostate can block the flow of urine out of the bladder, and the man may experience urinary problems such as a slow stream, incomplete emptying, the need to urinate more often and waking up several times at night to urinate.
“Medications can help men manage those symptoms,” says Vincenzo Galati, DO, FACS, urologist at Saint Francis Medical Center. “However, when medications fail, or when men want to stop taking those medications, we can open up the blockage in the prostate using a minimally invasive procedure known as GreenLight™ Laser Therapy.”
A small fiber is inserted into the urethra (urinary channel) through a cystoscope. The fiber carries laser energy that allows the surgeon to quickly remove the prostate tissue causing the blockage by vaporizing it (turning it from a solid into a gas). This allows the urine to pass through freely, restoring the natural flow of urine.
“Usually, patients notice a dramatic improvement in their urinary flow after they remove the catheter,” says Galati. “Within two weeks, they are usually back to all normal activities.”
“For men who want to treat their BPH without having to rely on medications or their side effects, GreenLight is an excellent option,” continues Galati. “It is just as effective as a traditional surgical procedure, but it usually does not involve a hospital stay and patients are able to go back to work and other activities much more quickly.”
For more information, call 573-331-3000.