This is a frequently asked question by patients considering undergoing treatment of their symptomatic prostate enlargement with TherMatrx® microwave thermotherapy. As with all medical treatments, every patient reacts in a slightly different way. Some do get immediate relief but in most cases, there is a gradual but progressive diminution both in the severity of symptoms and how often they occur. Urgency, which may have been a constant bother, diminishes after treatment to the point where it only happens occasionally before disappearing altogether. Frequent urinations also diminish until it’s no problem to hold it at least two hours and often much longer. Those who can’t get a good restful night’s sleep because they’re awakened so often by the need to urinate find that after treatment, as healing progresses, the number of awakenings slowly diminishes until finally, most will be able to sleep through. Patients report that following treatment, there is gradual improvement in the force and continuity of the stream. Pushing gradually becomes no longer necessary and that uncomfortable feeling of incomplete emptying becomes a memory that fades with time. Many happily report a subtle improvement in their sex lives. This does not happen in every case but the general trend is for sexual improvement to take place. All this occurs gradually over a period of time. Starting about a week or two after treatment, the relief of symptoms continues thereafter so that most of the improvement is complete within three months; by six months, improvement has reached maximum.
Patients who have chosen the non-surgical in-office TherMatrx® microwave treatment for the relief of symptoms caused by prostate enlargement often ask if it is a “one-time” treatment and inquire as to how long the improvement will last. No treatment, including the in-hospital surgical treatment TURP (Roto-Rooter), which usually requires spinal anesthesia, is truly a “one-time” treatment as there is an incidence of recurrence of symptoms. This may be due to scar tissue forming after surgery in the urethra or at the bladder neck or to the continued growth of residual prostate tissue remaining in the patient even after the most expertly performed TURP operation. Prostate glandular tissue continues to grow throughout a man’s life and repeat TURP procedures are required in about 30% of the cases. Similarly, following microwave thermotherapy, continued growth of the prostate may cause symptoms to recur requiring a repeat thirty-minute in-office, safe, anesthesia-free, easily tolerated procedure. Over the past eight years, most patients have enjoyed long-lasting relief of their symptoms following a single microwave procedure. That is why TherMatrx® transurethral microwave thermotherapy has become the most popular microwave thermotherapy treatment in the United States while the number of TURP surgeries done each year has diminished. Because of its excellent safety record, even patients, who are afraid to subject themselves to surgical or anesthetic risk, find TherMatrx® microwave thermotherapy a wise choice.
Have a Question? Call Dr. Okun at 718-241-6767