Surgical Procedure to Treat an Enlarged Prostate

Transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) is a surgical procedure to treat an enlarged prostate in men, known as Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), which often results in urinary issues. Long considered the “gold standard” for the surgical treatment for enlarged prostate, in a TURP procedure the physician uses an instrument called a resectoscope, which is inserted through the urethra to visualize the obstructing prostate tissue. The device contains a light, irrigation valves and an electric wire loop or laser that safely enables the surgeon to remove excess prostate tissue.

This removal of the obstructing prostate tissue allows for better flow of urine. The irrigation system on the resectoscope carries the tissue into the bladder where it is eventually flushed out at the conclusion of the surgical procedure. Unlike treatments for prostate cancer, this minimally invasive procedure makes no visible incisions and will not affect erections.

Are You a Candidate for TURP?

In most cases, the surgical intervention for BPH occurs to relieve the symptoms of an enlarged prostate when more conservative treatment options, such as behavioral modifications or medications, are not effective in treating BPH. A TURP procedure can help relieve the symptoms of frequent or urgent need to urinate, difficulty starting or maintaining a urine stream, waking up several times at night to urinate or the feeling that your bladder is not completely empty.

What to Expect Following the Procedure

The surgical procedure, which requires no incisions on the outside of your body, takes 30-90 minutes to complete and a 1-2 day stay in the hospital. While in the hospital, you will have a catheter for the first 24-48 hours to help ensure safe healing. There could also be a small amount of blood in the urine, and you could possibly experience irritation while urinating. Your doctor might also recommend drinking plenty of water to flush out the bladder and eating plenty of high fiber foods to help prevent constipation.

You should also avoid lifting heavy objects or performing strenuous activities following the procedure. Your physician could also temporarily stop the use of blood thinner medications immediately before and following surgery. Recovery from a TURP procedure usually takes 2-4 weeks to normal activity.

Get a Urology Referral

For a referral to a urologist who specializes in the TURP procedure, call the Wellington Regional Physician Referral Line at 561-798-9880.

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