High power diode laser vaporization of the prostate: preliminary results for benign prostatic hyperplasia

Ali Erol, Kamil Cam, Ali Tekin, Omur Memik, Soner Coban, Yavuz Ozer
Journal of Urology 2009, 182 (3): 1078-82

PURPOSE: Vaporization techniques using lasers have gained wide acceptance for benign prostatic hyperplasia as an alternative to transurethral prostate resection. The high power, 980 nm wavelength diode laser is a new promising alternative with a more rapid ablation rate and excellent hemostatic properties, as shown in ex vivo and in vivo animal models. We prospectively evaluated vaporization efficiency of the high power, 980 nm diode laser for bladder outlet obstruction due to benign prostatic hyperplasia.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 47 consecutive patients were included in the study. Inclusion criteria were maximal flow rate 12 ml per second or less with voided volume 150 ml or greater, International Prostate Symptom Score 12 or greater and quality of life score 3 or greater. Patients with a history of neurogenic voiding dysfunction, chronic prostatitis, or prostate or bladder cancer were excluded from analysis. Preoperative maximal flow rate, post-void residual urine, International Prostate Symptom Score, quality of life, International Index of Erectile Function-5, prostate specific antigen and prostate volume were compared with values at 3 and 6 months. Complications were assessed.

RESULTS: Month 3 assessment revealed that the mean +/- SD International Prostate Symptom Score decreased significantly from 21.93 +/- 4.88 to 10.31 +/- 3.79 (p = 0.0001). The mean maximal flow rate increased significantly from 8.87 +/- 2.18 to 17.51 +/- 4.09 ml per second (p = 0.0001). Quality of life score changed considerably compared to baseline. All of these values showed slight improvement at month 6. There was no deterioration in erectile function according to the International Index of Erectile Function-5 short form. Post-void residual urine decreased significantly. Prostate volume and prostate specific antigen reductions were also significant. The most common postoperative complications were retrograde ejaculation (13 of 41 patients or 31.7%) and irritative symptoms (11 of 47 or 23.4%), which subsided in the maximal flow rate at 2 weeks. Recatheterization was necessary in 2 patients due to urinary retention after catheter removal. Two patients had temporary combined urge and stress incontinence for 2 weeks. Late bleeding in 1 patient 4 weeks postoperatively necessitated catheterization and irrigation.

CONCLUSIONS: The high power diode laser provided significant improvements in International Prostate Symptom Score and the maximal flow rate with low morbidity. Thus, these results of prostate vaporization with the high power diode laser, representing what is to our knowledge the first clinical study in the literature, are encouraging.

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