Published 18 July 2019
East Kent Hospitals are now the first NHS hospital in Kent to offer a procedure known as Urolift, helping those with prostate problems across the county.
As men age, many have to deal with symptoms related to the prostate. The new UroLift technique is designed for patients with Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia, a condition in which the prostate enlarges as men get older.
As the prostate enlarges, it presses on and blocks the urethra, causing urinary problems. More than one in three men over the age of 50 suffer with issues related to an enlarged prostate.
The new revolutionary treatment will end the need for invasive surgery under general anaesthetic and instead of recovering in a hospital for several days, the 15-minute procedure allows patients to return home after just a few hours.
Previously, patients would require surgery to remove or laser part of the prostate – a procedure that would typically take 60 minutes and usually require a stay of one or two nights in hospital, as well as risk side effects including sexual problems.
However, thanks to the Urolift technique, patients can now be treated as a day case with a minimally-invasive procedure that takes just 5-10 minutes – meaning they don’t require a hospital stay or a catheter, suffer fewer side effects and will recover much quicker.
Edward Streeter, Consultant Urological Surgeon at Kent and Canterbury, is introducing the procedure in July and said the technique is a significant development.
Mr Streeter explains: “Urolift offers not only a better experience for affected men, but also means we can see and treat more patients with this debilitating condition, which is good for everyone concerned.
“Patients experience rapid symptom relief, recover from the procedure quickly, and return to their normal routines with minimal downtime.
“UroLift is a low risk, highly effective treatment that will hopefully take away some of the worry and embarrassment for those patients who have previously put off getting their symptoms treated. Men shouldn’t feel they have to soldier on for fear of having something done.
“As with many problems, early intervention can actually improve the long term outcomes too.”
The single use implants are inserted under local anaesthetic and are permanent. The implants relieve prostate obstruction and open the urethra directly without cutting, heating, or removing prostate tissue. Affected men are advised to speak to their GPs for more information.