A 4-year follow-up of a randomized prospective study comparing transurethral electrovaporization of the prostate with neodymium: YAG laser therapy for treating benign prostatic hyperplasia

M Abdel-Khalek, S El-Hammady, El-H Ibrahiem
BJU International 2003, 91 (9): 801-5

OBJECTIVE: To compare the safety, efficacy and durability of neodymium (Nd):YAG laser prostatectomy with transurethral electrovaporization of the prostate (TUVP) for treating benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).

PATIENTS AND METHODS: From March 1995 to March 1997, 180 patients with bladder outlet obstruction secondary to BPH were randomized equally either to Nd:YAG laser therapy or TUVP. Laser therapy combined two different techniques, side-fire coagulation of the lateral lobes and contact vaporization of the median lobe. Before treatment the two groups had a comparable International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS), quality-of-life score (QoL), maximum urinary flow rate (Qmax), postvoid residual urine volume (PVR), and prostate and adenoma volume. In all, 62 and 78 patients completed the 1, 2, 3 and 4-year follow-up from the laser and TUVP groups, respectively.

RESULTS: At each follow-up, the IPSS, QoL, Qmax and PVR were significantly better and more durable in the TUVP than in the laser group. In the TUVP and laser groups respectively, at the 4-year follow-up the mean value of the IPSS was 3.7 vs 11.9, the QoL 1.3 vs 3.1, the Qmax 21.4 vs 13.6 mL/s and the PVR 25.1 vs 64.6 mL (all P < 0.001). The mean prostate and adenoma volume were significantly lower after TUVP than after laser therapy (P < 0.001) at the 1- and 4-year follow-up, with final values of 27.9 vs 35.9 and 11.7 vs 20 mL (both P < 0.001) for the TUVP and laser groups, respectively. Retrograde ejaculation was significantly more common after TUVP (63%) than after laser therapy (18%; P < 0.001). Impotence was reported in 8% of men after TUVP and in none after laser therapy (P = 0.040). The re-operation rate was 12% after TUVP and 38% after laser treatment (P < 0.001).

CONCLUSION: These 4-year follow-up results confirm that TUVP is significantly more effective and durable than the Nd:YAG laser for treating BPH. Residual obstructing adenoma was the main cause of failure in the laser group, which reflects the inadequacy of laser therapy for removing the adenoma.

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