Prostate Artery Embolization vs. UroLift®: What procedure is right for you?

If you’re a man over 50, chances are high that you may be experiencing the symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). Also known as “enlarged prostate,” this condition causes lifestyle-impacting symptoms like increased urinary frequency (especially at night), a weak urine stream and the inability to fully empty the bladder.

BPH is so common that it affects half of all men 51-60 years old and 90% of men over 80.1 When symptoms worsen and conventional treatment has failed, many men seek options for treatment. In a previous blog, we discussed the potential drawbacks of transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) surgery. But now there are other minimally invasive options that men may be considering along with prostate artery embolization (PAE).

One of these is called UroLift®. It is a type of minimally invasive procedure that uses a special device to place permanent implants into the body to lift prostatic tissue away from the urethra to reduce pressure and improve urine flow. The advantage of this procedure is that, in addition to being a minimally invasive outpatient procedure, it reduces the symptoms of BPH without inhibiting sexual function in men. This procedure is considered safe and effective at reducing obstructive prostate tissue.

PAE on the other hand addresses the root cause of the problem by reducing the size of the prostate. Like UroLift, it is a minimally invasive outpatient procedure. However, PAE involves the injection of micro-particles that partially block the flow of blood to the gland, causing it to shrink and symptoms to alleviate. It can also be used in patients with larger prostates, and there is evidence to suggest it can improve sexual performance for many men.

We encourage you to learn the facts before deciding which procedure is right for you. If you would like more information about PAE, including a brochure you can share with your doctor, please call us at 947-228-5500.

  1. Barry M, Roehrborn C. Management of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Annu Rev Med. 1997;48:77-189
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