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Transurethral resection of the prostate, more commonly known as TURP, is a procedure that treats moderate to severe prostate enlargement scenarios. An enlarged prostate may also be known as benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH. The prostate is a male gland located beneath the bladder. The male urethra, which offers urine flow from the kidneys to the outside of the body through the penis, is surrounded by the prostate. Prostate enlargement may inhibit the flow of urine outside the body, as well as cause pain and discomfort. TURP procedures are common and are used in about 90% of surgeries treating benign prostatic hyperplasia.
Benefits of the TURP Procedure
Men experiencing difficulty or painful urination and chronic enlargement of the prostate gland may benefit from a TURP procedure. In some cases, enlarged prostate glands are precursors of more serious prostate conditions such as cancer. In some cases, a urologist may recommend a TURP procedure to excise tissues to be sent to laboratories to analyze, and for early prostate cancer detection.
TURP Procedure Details
During the TURP procedure, the surgeon trims excess prostatic tissue from the prostate, helping to relieve pressure on urethra and help relieve difficulty in urination. A relatively minimally invasive procedure, TURP is generally performed through the utilization of a resectoscope inserted into the urethra through the penis. The resectoscope is roughly 30 cm in length and 1 cm in diameter.
Patients are given a spinal anesthetic during the procedure, which allows them to be awake, or patients may opt for a general anesthetic that will put them to sleep during the procedure. The procedure last between 1 to 1 1/2 hours. The resectoscope utilizes an electrical loop attached to one end that enables the urologist to trim prostatic tissues from the inside of the prostate gland. This creates more room inside the prostate and decreases pressure on the urethra. The excised tissue is flushed into the bladder through the irrigating tube inside the resectoscope and flushed out of the bladder upon completion of the operation.
The recovery process following a TURP procedure is usually only one or two days. Patients may experience small amounts of blood or blood clots in the urine following the procedure. Some men will experience some painful urination following the procedure, which will improve in 1 to 4 weeks. Individuals receive follow-up checks and are generally able to go back to work relatively quickly. Those who work in manual labor positions may need to wait between four and six weeks to return to work, depending on individualized cases.
How Much Does a TURP Procedure Cost?
The average cost of a TURP procedure in the United States is roughly between $5,000 and $6,000, and doesn't include the fees of the urologist or anesthesiologist. Individuals traveling to foreign destinations such as India can obtain the TURP procedure for around $3,000, while trained and certified urologists in destinations such as Costa Rica or Croatia charge an average of around $3,500.
Who Performs TURP Procedures?
A urologist is a doctor who has specialized in training in branches of surgery to the kidneys, bladder, or urethra, male reproductive organs or pelvic surgery. Choose a surgeon who has undergone basic and comprehensive education in general surgery, who then undergoes additional training in urology, a surgical subspecialty. Individuals should be certified and experienced in TURP procedures. He or she should be approved to practice in accredited healthcare facilities or hospitals. Specialists should be experienced and knowledgeable regarding specific conditions.