Thursday, July 24, 2008

Maintaining Men’s Health

(NAPSI)-Physicians may be able to offer good news to many of the over 26 million men in the United States who suffer from enlarged prostate, a natural condition that disrupts daily activities.

Enlarged prostate, also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), is a common condition that affects more than half of all men over the age of 60. Most men notice symptoms such as frequent urination, particularly at night, or difficulty trying to go, but assume the problem is just part of the aging process. Although the condition is not cancerous, if left untreated it can cause permanent urinary problems.

Symptoms of BPH that men should watch for include:

• Frequent or sudden need to urinate

• Interrupted sleep due to the need to urinate

• Weak, variable or dribbling stream

• Difficulty beginning urination

• Pain or burning during urination

• Sensation that the bladder is not completely empty after urination

In order to maintain good health and enjoy a worry-free lifestyle, most men who suffer from enlarged prostate choose to seek medical treatment. In the past, medication or surgery was favored; however, more men are now choosing a minimally invasive laser therapy that dramatically improves symptoms without the complications of more invasive surgery.

Although some symptom relief may be attained through taking medications, they do not permanently treat BPH. Medication is a costly alternative that must be taken every day for the rest of your life to maintain symptom relief and may even stop working over time. Side effects of medication can include dizziness, nasal congestion, low blood pressure and erectile dysfunction or even impotence. Taking medications also does not necessarily eliminate the need for surgery in the future.

Transurethral Resection of the Prostate (TURP) is an invasive surgical procedure that usually provides long-lasting relief; however, the procedure can cause side effects such as incontinence, the inability to control your bladder and erectile dysfunction or impotence. Because anesthesia is involved, there is also the risk of general surgical complications. TURP typically requires a three-day hospital stay and most patients are catheterized for four days. Furthermore, activities are restricted for six weeks as TURP requires a lengthy recovery time.

With all those factors in mind, many men are opting for GreenLight™ Laser Therapy instead of TURP. GreenLight is a one-time, outpatient procedure that delivers immediate symptom relief without the side effects or expense of medication, or the risks associated with invasive surgery. The procedure, which is covered by Medicare and most private insurance, uses laser energy to remove enlarged prostate tissue, resulting in an open channel for urine to flow through. Most patients return home within a few hours after the procedure and can return to normal, nonstrenuous activities within days.

For more information or to find a physician nearby, visit

Many men are enjoying a more vigorous lifestyle thanks to a new way to treat an old problem.