Aquablation is a safe and effective treatment option to help relieve symptoms associated with benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) 1, which is an abnormal, non-cancerous prostate gland enlargement in males. Although BPH is not life-threatening2, it may cause complications that may lead to a more severe condition. Aquablation may be recommended if medications or non-surgical treatments are not enough to manage symptoms.

What Causes an Enlarged Prostate?

The exact cause of enlarged prostate is unknown. Certain factors may put a person at risk of developing this condition, such as aging, a family history of prostate problems, changes in the testicle cells and testosterone levels. Men who have had testicle removal at a young age do not develop BPH.3

Symptoms of Enlarged Prostate

With BPH, prostate gland cells multiply and cause it to swell, squeezing the urethra and restricting urine flow. Enlarged prostate symptoms may include:

  • Frequent urination, especially during sleeping periods
  • Trouble starting urination
  • A weak or an interrupted urine stream
  • Inability to empty the bladder through urination
  • Urinary incontinence or urine leakage

Consult with your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms for proper diagnosis and treatment. Getting treated for these symptoms may help prevent complications.

What Is Aquablation Therapy?

Aquablation is an FDA-approved4 minimally invasive benign prostatic hyperplasia treatment. It involves using a pressurized jet of fluid to remove excess prostate tissue. Aquablation has a camera with ultrasound imaging that enables the surgeon to see the prostate in real-time. With this technology, the surgeon can capture multi-dimensional images to map the treatment area on the patient’s body, customizing the surgery to the patient’s specific prostate anatomy.

After creating the surgical plan, the surgeon monitors the robot as it releases the waterjet that removes excess tissue in the treatment site. Aquablation is the only surgical procedure that doesn’t use heat, as heat may damage other prostate parts that control ejaculation and erection.1 After Aquablation, your surgeon may use a minimal amount of cautery, which involves using chemicals or electricity to close wounds and control bleeding, if needed.

Who Is a Candidate for Aquablation Therapy?

Candidates for Aquablation procedure are typically men with BPH who experience symptoms associated with this condition. However, a patient must be thoroughly evaluated by a urologist for their condition, medical history, overall health and other factors before recommending Aquablation as an appropriate treatment. Aquablation may not be recommended to patients who have had previous prostate surgery, have a large prostate, have existing medical conditions that may increase their risk of surgical complications or have active infections in the urinary tract.

Benefits of Aquablation

  • More minimally invasive than other robotic-assisted surgeries
  • Can be used for an extensive range of prostate sizes and shapes for BPH
  • No incisions are needed since the prostate can be accessed through the urethra
  • Less blood loss, less erectile dysfunctions and a higher rate of preserving ejaculatory function and continence1

What To Expect During Aquablation Therapy?

At Saint Francis Healthcare, our urologists perform Aquablation therapy in our hospital. The patient will be given anesthesia for the entire procedure. Aquablation usually takes less than an hour and involves staying in the hospital overnight.5

What Happens After Aquablation?

The patient may need to use a catheter after surgery to allow him to urinate. Many patients leave the hospital without a catheter, but some patients may need to stay another night or wear the catheter at home for a few days if they still cannot urinate on their own.5

Aquablation recovery time varies for each patient. Some may be able to return to their normal activities within a week or two, while others may take longer. The main restriction during recovery is to avoid lifting heavy weights for two weeks. It is normal to experience mild burning during urination for a couple of weeks following surgery. Medications may be able to manage this pain. Make sure to follow your doctor’s instructions to help with your recovery and report any unusual symptoms.

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