Thulium Fiber Laser (TFL) Technology Proving to Be a Game Changer in the Treatment of Enlarged Prostate

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Minimally invasive procedure bringing much relief to elderly men with BPH

The Thulium fiber laser (TFL) technology is proving to be an effective treatment for enlarged prostate. Senior Urologist and President of Ace Hospital Erandwane, Prof.Dr. Suresh Patankar said that the minimally invasive procedure, with cutting edge equipment, less damage to nerves near the enlarged prostate, minimal blood loss and pain and faster recovery, is a game changer in the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).

The prostate is a gland surrounding the urethra, the tube through which urine passes out of the body. It produces fluid that carries the sperm during ejaculation. Prostate enlargement or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is one of the most common health problem in men above the age group of 50 yrs. BPH can result in numerous problems like urinary tract complaints, kidney problems or blocked flow of urine which can worsen with time if not treated.

Ace Hospital is one of the first in Pune to adopt this technology, especially for enlarged prostate and has carried out this procedure on about 150 patients till now, since installing this cutting edge technology in March this year.

Whenever a patient is diagnosed with enlarged prostate, it is ascertained whether the growth is benign or cancerous through PSA or biopsy if required. Earlier ‘Transurethral resection of the prostate’ (TURP) surgery was used to treat urinary problems that are caused by an enlarged prostate. An instrument called the ‘resectoscope’ is inserted through the tip of your penis into the tube that carries urine from the bladder (urethra). In the last decade, Holmium Laser TURP became the preferred choice.

Dr. Patankar added, that in recent months Thulium fiber laser (TFL) has emerged as an alternative to Holmium laser-the current gold standard for prostate surgery.  The TFL technology ensures, that unlike in earlier procedures, almost the whole prostate is removed from its capsule & cut with morcellator into pieces & removed. In earliar technnology  tissues were cut using current/plasma which dissipated into tissues & caused nurve damage leading to sexul problems. TFL technique causes minimal damage to the nerves in that area. The depth of penetration of energy is also very less. Therefore this is also beneficial especially for those in the sexually active age group of around 50 years who are diagnosed with BPH and as a result face issues like sexual dysfunction. The minimally invasive procedure with cutting and coagulating (homeostatic) characteristics causes minimal blood loss and faster recovery. High risk patients like those with advance age and comorbidities or those on blood thinners are especially benefited. This is because blood loss is a risk in such patients which is mitigated to a large extent in TFL technology.  Also risk of post-operative bleeding, narrowing of urinary tract (Strictures) are also very less. The fact that a large or the entire enlarged portion or tissue is removed, the chances of recurrence of BPH are the least.

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