Prostate enlargement is a common problem for men over 50. By age 60, more than 50 per cent of men face this problem and by age 85 the percentage climbs to 90 per cent. Traditionally, patients suffering with prostate enlargement have been receiving treatment through medications or surgery. The TURP procedure to treat the condition takes about an hour and requires a two to three day stay in hospital.
Patients in the UAE will now be offered an innovative steam treatment – the Rezum water vapour procedure. Available at RAK Hospital in the UAE, the non-surgical option relieves benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), also known as prostate gland enlargement, and can be conducted as a daycare procedure without the need for hospitalisation. The quick procedure takes only about 10-15 minutes and doesn’t require general anaesthesia.
BPH is an excess growth of prostate tissue that compresses and obstructs the urethra, reducing the flow of urine from the bladder and sometimes blocking it entirely. Symptoms include waking up multiple times during the night to urinate; frequent, urgent, irregular and weak urinary flow; anxiety; challenges with sexual function and limitations on daily activities.
When the bladder is not emptied completely the risk of developing urinary tract infection increases. Other serious problems can also develop over time, including bladder stones, blood in the urine, incontinence and an inability to urinate. In rare cases, bladder or kidney damage can also occur as a consequence.
“The new Rezum therapy reduces the risk of associated complications such as bleeding, incontinence and sexual dysfunction and takes 10-15 minutes under local anaesthesia with patients able to go home the same day,” says Dr Dinanath Thakar, Consultant Urologist and Head of Department at RAK Hospital.
“The procedure is to reduce the size of the prostate and not to cut it out, reduces the magnitude of the intervention and hence the complication rate leaving all the associated body tissue around the prostate undisturbed,” he adds.
The water vapour treatment works by delivering very small amounts of steam to the enlarged prostate which damages the cells causing obstruction, reducing the overall size and the associated symptoms.
“The water boils at 100-degree census,” Dr Thakar explains. “The steam has latent heat giving higher temperature causing sterile prostate cell death.”