What mechanical approaches are used to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH)?

Updated: Feb 19, 2021
  • Author: Levi A Deters, MD; Chief Editor: Edward David Kim, MD, FACS  more...
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Mechanical approaches are used less commonly and are usually reserved for patients who cannot have a formal surgical procedure. Mechanical approaches do not involve the use of energy to treat the prostate.

Prostatic stents are flexible devices that can expand when put in place to improve the flow of urine past the prostate. Complications associated with their use include encrustation, pain, incontinence, and overgrowth of tissue through the stent, possibly making their removal quite difficult.

In September 2013, the FDA authorized the marketing of the first permanent implant to relieve low or blocked urine flow in men aged 50 years and older with an enlarged prostate. The UroLift system (NeoTract Inc) relieves urine flow by pulling back prostate tissue that is pressing on the urethra. Approval was based on 2 studies of 274 men with BPH implanted with 2 or more UroLift sutures. [42] The UroLift was successfully inserted in 98% of participants, and a 30% increase in urine flow and a steady amount of residual urine in the bladder was observed. Patients reported fewer symptoms and improved quality of life in the 2 years following device implantation.

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