UF Health urologist offers FDA-approved, minimally invasive outpatient procedure.
It is a life-altering issue affecting half of all men between 51 and 60, and it only worsens with age. Benign prostatic hyperplasia, also known as BPH or benign enlarged prostate, is among the most common urological diagnoses in men, according to the American Urological Association.
“Men can begin experiencing symptoms as early as their mid-30s, but typical cases occur in men who are in their 50s and 60s,” said Joseph Costa, DO, a UF Health urologist.
The prostate is located between the bladder and urethra, the tube men use to urinate. As the prostate grows, it can squeeze down on the urethra, causing symptoms that greatly impact quality of life.
“Patients can experience frequent urination, restlessness due to multiple nighttime trips to the bathroom, pushing or straining to urinate, weak urinary stream, trouble emptying their bladder and sexual dysfunction,” Costa said. “If left untreated, BPH can cause urinary tract infections and in extreme cases can lead to permanent bladder or kidney damage.”
UroLift is a Food and Drug Administration-approved, minimally invasive outpatient procedure that uses tiny implants to relieve obstruction by the prostate without cutting, heating or removal of tissues, as with prior treatments. The procedure can be done in minutes, and afterward, men are able to walk out the door.
“A device goes through the urethra and places clips on the prostate on both sides of the channel,” Costa said. “This keeps the gland from blocking the tube, preventing the symptoms and complications caused by BPH.”
UroLift can be completed in a doctor’s office with the use of local anesthesia or at a hospital where more options for anesthesia are available. The procedure does not remove any tissue, so patients experience minimal side effects and have a rapid recovery.
“Patients tend to see their symptoms disappear in about a week, after the swelling subsides,” Costa said. “Usually, I am able to stop all of their BPH medications a week or two after the procedure.”
UroLift is not recommended for men who are diagnosed with prostate cancer that is being treated with radiation. Depending on the growth rate, some patients may need an additional, more invasive procedure to treat their enlarged prostates.
“This procedure is a very progressive option and provides an intermediary step that is more effective than medication and causes fewer complications than inpatient surgery,” Costa said.
UF Health Urology – Jacksonville was the first practice in the region to offer the procedure after it was approved by Medicare in Florida.
If you are experiencing symptoms related to an enlarged prostate, call 633.0411 or visit UFHealthJax.org/urology to schedule an appointment with a UF Health urologist.
Assistant Dean for Clinical Informatics; Interim Program Director, Urology Residency