Practice Offers Telemedicine!
Skip to main content


Pacific Northwest Urology Specialists

Located in Bellingham, WA - Serving the Pacific Northwest

Transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) is the most common surgery used to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), a noncancerous enlargement of the prostate. About 150,000 men in the United States have TURPs every year. The physicians at Pacific Northwest Urology Specialists have extensive experience safely and effectively performing TURP to relieve BPH problems like difficulty urinating and frequent trips to the bathroom. If you have these symptoms, call the office in Bellingham, Washington, or book an appointment online today. If you’re suffering from the symptoms of an enlarged prostate, like difficulty urinating, the urologists at Pacific Northwest Urology Specialists can offer relief. Located in Bellingham, Washington, the experienced team of urologists offers a wide range of advanced treatments for prostate conditions, including photovaporization of the prostate. To learn more about the advantages of photovaporization of the prostate, call Pacific Northwest Urology Specialists or schedule an appointment online today.


What condition is treated with TURP?

TURP is a surgical procedure used to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). BPH, or as it’s more commonly known, an enlarged prostate, naturally occurs as you grow older. Starting around the age of 25, your prostate begins to grow, slowly increasing in size throughout your adult life.

BPH seldom causes symptoms before the age of 40, but half of all men experience problems with urination between the ages of 51 and 60.

The classic symptoms of BPH include urinary frequency, urinary urgency, frequent urination during the night, and trouble starting to urinate. You can also have a hard time completely emptying your bladder.


Does BPH cause complications?

Although it’s not common, BPH can lead to complications such as urinary tract infections, kidney damage, bladder damage, and bladder stones. In some cases, men don’t know they have a problem until their urinary tract is totally blocked.

It’s important to schedule an appointment if you develop a urine blockage, urination is painful, you see blood in your urine, or you have lower abdominal pain.


What is TURP?

Your prostate surrounds the urethra, which is the tube that carries urine out of your body. As you develop BPH, it’s increasing size pushes against the urethra, causing your urinary problems. TURP treats your urinary tract symptoms by removing small pieces of the prostate.

Your doctor at Pacific Northwest Urology Specialists recommends TURP when your BPH symptoms are moderate to severe despite nonsurgical treatment such as medications to shrink the prostate.


How is TURP performed?

TURP is performed at our outpatient ambulatory surgery center or in the hospital while you’re under general anesthesia. The procedure takes about 90 minutes. During the procedure, your doctor inserts a long narrow device through your penis and up to the prostate.

Your doctor uses one of two possible techniques to remove some of the prostate and open the urethra. One technique uses an electrical loop that cuts away thin layers of tissue; the other uses heat from a laser to destroy the tissue.

When your surgery is finished, your doctor inserts a catheter that stays in place for a few days while you heal.

When it’s hard to urinate or you end up getting up several times during the night, call Pacific Northwest Urology Specialists or book an appointment online.

What is benign prostatic hyperplasia?

Benign prostatiac hyperplasia (BPH) occurs when you have an enlarged prostate. BPH isn’t cancerous or caused by cancer.

The prostate is part of the male reproductive system and makes fluid for ejaculation. It surrounds your urethra below your bladder. Your urethra is a tube that carries urine from your bladder through your penis so it can exit your body.

When your prostate grows in size, it can squeeze down on your urethra making it difficult to urinate. Additional symptoms of BPH include:

  • Frequent and intense urges to urinate
  • Difficulty starting urination
  • A weak stream that may stop and start
  • Dribbling at the end of urination
  • Unable to completely empty your bladder

This condition affects approximately half of men age 50 and older and 90% of men over 80.


How is BPH treated?

The Pacific Northwest Urology Specialists team has several treatments to help manage BPH. Less invasive treatments include medications and procedures like UroLift®, which lifts and holds your prostate away from your urethra.

Your urologist might also recommend minimally invasive procedures that remove excess prostate tissue, like transurethral electrovaporization of the prostate and transurethral resection of the prostate. Common surgical treatments for BPH include simple prostatectomy and robotic simple prostatectomy.

The Pacific Northwest Urology Specialists team also performs photovaporization of the prostate, or PVP.


What is photovaporization of the prostate?

PVP, or GreenLight™ laser therapy, is an innovative treatment for BPH that uses precisely directed laser energy to remove prostate tissue. This BPH treatment offers numerous advantages, including:

  • Less blood loss compared with other methods
  • Safer for men taking aspirin or blood thinners
  • Faster recovery
  • More immediate results

Your urologist performs PVP on an outpatient basis while you’re under general anesthetic.


What can I expect during photovaporization of the prostate?

During PVP treatment, your urologist inserts a thin scope through the opening of your penis into your urethra. They then insert a laser through the scope to remove the excess prostate tissue blocking your urethra.

After your procedure, you often have swelling that temporarily requires a urinary catheter to help you pass urine. When your swelling goes down, your urologist removes your catheter, and you can urinate normally.

You either go home the same day or spend the night in the hospital. In most cases, you should avoid strenuous activity for a few days and ejaculation for a week or two.

Call Pacific Northwest Urology Specialists or schedule an appointment online today.