PVP GreenLight Laser Treatment
Larry in Lakeland

Clearwater, FL

#244 Sep 28, 2008
Roy - SE Wisconsin wrote:
Just an update. In going to see my doctor Friday PM I did urinate at the office. However there was still a considerable amount in my bladder after I was done. They put me back on the catheter and drained a considerable amount of urine from my bladder. In talking to the doctor, he told me that there was two issues here. First of all, because of the considerable amount of tissue that he removed from the prostrate, the prostrate is still quite swellen. In addition, because I have had the BPH condition so long, the bladder was stretched and the bladder muscle has become week. Together these things are causing the Urinary Retention that I am experiencing.
So now the plan is for me to wait until next Wednesday when I remove the catheter at 6 AM and then I have an appointment with my doctor at 1:30 PM.
Roy:

Thanks for the info. Seems I am having the same issues with long term BPH but my doc isn't communicating. I have removed the cath 3 times and returned to ER within 18 hours for a replacement. I too was never able to fully empty my bladder. Please let me know how you are doing. I will do the same.... Thanks
Roy - SE Wisconsin

Brookfield, WI

#245 Sep 29, 2008
Thanks Larry

I only hope that my doctor gives me some other option rather than telling me to go to a self catheter system. If he doesn't give me another option, I guess I will need to get another opinion. However, as I'm sure you will agree, trying to live on a catheter is no fun. The Self Cather system my be an option for a short time.
Roy - SE Wisconsin

Brookfield, WI

#246 Oct 1, 2008
Took out the Catheter this AM. Went to the Doctor at 1:30. Much better. At least he didn't put me back on the catheter. Last week he drained more than 750 ml from me. Today it was down to 240. He put me on a self cather (in the office) and gave me what I needed to do it at home. I'm to do it twice a day. Once in the Morning and once in the Evening. I can handle that. I have to go back next Thursday to check progress.
In talking with the doctor, he told me that it will take up to 6 weeks for my prostrate to shrink back down. Its the swelling form the prostrate that is causing my problem. Once he gets me down to about 100ml I should be done for good.
Cliff

Massapequa, NY

#247 Oct 1, 2008
Does anyone know if, in addition to calming the bladder muscles, Detrol L.A. also weakens them to any degree, causing a not-so-forceful urination and even possibly an inability to empty the bladder completely? Also, if you drink 2 glasses of water (about 500 mL) within a short period of time (about 10 minutes) and then urinate anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes later (like when you have to go to the urologist with a full bladder), how much of that 500 mL should you be able to pee out? I've been doing this at home to flush out my system, and I only urinate about half of what I drank, but then 15 or 20 minutes later I'm back in the bathroom peeing out most of the rest.
Larry Mesquite

Frisco, TX

#248 Oct 2, 2008
Had the pvp laser 17 days ago.No pain, stinging or burning now, no urgency, very strong stream.Still get up two or three times a night.Still a touch of pink on occasion.it improves every day.After years of fighting an enlarged prostrate I am very very pleased with the results.After the first week things improved rapidly.
Roy - SE Wisconsin

Brookfield, WI

#250 Oct 10, 2008
Went to see the Doctor yesterday. I have progressed very well. The amounts I got from Self Catheter have droped to 150cc's or below for the last couple of days. He told me to go down to Self Catheter once a day (In the morning) and If I continue to get 150 or less, then I can discontinue the Self Catheter. This AM I didn't even get 100. My next Appointment is set for Nov 13.
Larry in Lakeland

Clearwater, FL

#252 Oct 16, 2008
It's been almost 1 month since I had the proceedure. I'm not having pain anymore and am back to the gym. I'm still having to urinate every 2-3 hours night and day. Sometimes more often.I can live with the results. It beats not being able to urinate. I do get sudden urges and sometimes feel I have to urinate a few minutes after urinating. I presume this will become less frquent over time.

I'll speak to my doc in 2 weeks and see what he thinks. My urine does have a strange smell. The doc did advise me this would happen. Not sure what that's all about.
kevin

UK

#253 Oct 21, 2008
had pvp op 4 weeks ago a lot of pain in the tip of peins & felt off colour in week 3 & 4. flow was good at first after op but now have a weak flow & i still have days with blood in urine, is this normal after 4 weeks? thanks kevin.
R Damien

Boulder Creek, CA

#254 Oct 25, 2008
My urologist recommended that I have the Greenlight PVP procedure. I have a median-lobe ball-valve BPH problem that essential acts like a drain stop or flap that closes during urination. This results in me not being able to void fully. The analogy is to think of flushing the toilet and when the plunger in the toilet bowl goes down it prevents any more water/urine from being voided. This is supposedly common in 25% of all men who have BPH.
This is a bit of a nuisance, but I wanted to check out the best remedy for the situation, and see that the Greenlight PVP seems to be the preferred method of treatment. Unfortunately, I’m a bit scared of all the mixed feedback I’ve been reading, so I tried to put all of it in perspective. I would like to share the results with you. These results took me about 2 full days to read and compile. I hope you find them of value.
The information I’m about to post is based on feedback and comments from 5 different forums, where men talk about their Greenlight PVP procedure(s) that they had. These forums are:“Topix.com”(2sites),“Stead yhealth.com”,“Menshealth.com”, and “mombu.com”. I tried my best to eliminate duplicate posts and posts where men just had the operation, and it is really too soon to come up with any valid assessment of how well the surgery went. I’ve taken the PVP literature into account, as well as most anecdotal data, which suggests that the recovery time should be about 3 weeks. I am only posting the positive and negative comments and feedback from people who are at the 3-week post-surgery point, and beyond.
This is what I compiled, and I want you to know that the numbers and percentage statistics are based just on what people commented on in the forums—what they felt they wanted to write about and what they felt was most important, post-surgery, for others to know. I know that a lot of people who have successful surgeries don’t feel the need to write, but then again, you have the literature pretty much explaining this as being a walk in the park, when many of the comments from men who have actually undergone the PVP procedure beg to differ. Look for the next post for the results as there is a word limit per post.

Thanks, Damien
R Damien

Boulder Creek, CA

#255 Oct 25, 2008
Total number of people who underwent Greenlight PVP procedure: 251 (100%)

Number of negative comments and feedback results about the procedure: 172 (69%)

Number of positive comments and feedback results about the procedure: 79 (31%)

Other neutral comments (inquiries, trying to locate a doctor, cost, follow-ups, etc.): 144

Positive comments:

Urine flow significantly/noticeably/vastl y improved: 50/251 (20%)

No problems (within or after 3 months)/Overall pleased: 20/251 (8%)

Recommends procedure/Would Do It Again/No Regrets: 18/251 (7%)

No retrograde ejaculation or erectile dysfunction: 15/251 (6%)

Other Positive comments (less than 10 each/3%) listed in order of importance are: Fast recovery; no side effects; No nocturia (getting up in the middle of the night to urinate); had a skilled doctor; Improved the Quality of Life; Has less sense of frequency/urgency to urinate.

Negative comments (beyond a reasonable healing time):

Frequency/Urgency to urinate still there: 54/251 (22%)

Retrograde Ejaculation: 47/251 (19%)

Regrets Surgery/Does not Recommend Surgery/Worse than Before: 30/251 (12%)

Slow Recovery (3 months to over a year): 29/251 (16%)

No improvement/Marginal Improvement/Same problems as before: 27/251 (11%)

Second or more procedures required after having first PVP: 24/251 (10%)

Dribbling/Leakage/Incontinence (have to wear maxi-pads or Kotex): 23/251 (9%)

Other Negative comments (less than 20 each/8%) listed in order of importance are: Catheterization needed/Blood Clots/Blocked urination; Pain; Painful urination and long-term burning; Infections (urinary and otherwise); Blood in urine (excessive length of time); Less urine voiding and urinary retention; Nocturia (increased or little improvement); Painful ejaculation or other sexual disorders (non-retrograde, such as loss of libido); Impacted rectum/affecting other body parts/nerve damage; Results not long lasting; Scar tissue (excessive)/laser damage; Poor urine flow; Recommend procedure only if doctor is highly skilled/experienced; No erection or weak erection; Swelling won’t subside; Doctor mislead outcome/side effects of the procedure; Thoughts of suicide.

I will place another post analyzing these results, and welcome all of you to comment on them as well.

Thanks again, Damien
R Damien

Boulder Creek, CA

#256 Oct 25, 2008
Based on the summary of comments and feedbacks, I don’t feel this is a procedure for everyone. Odds are good that if you have BPH, your biggest problem is frequency and urgency in urination.

Based on what people have commented on, there is little to no improvement in this area, after you go through Greenlight PVP. Yes, I know that over 100,000-200,000 men have had this operation and only about 250 people bothered to write. So what? The other 200,000 had their chance too.

I wouldn’t be misled by what the doctor says, because the doctor really has no interest in what you’re going through, post-op, or if you can’t have children (in the traditional sense) anymore, because you have retrograde ejaculation. I’ve been to four urologists and they all seem to have a rather cavalier “so-what” attitude about dry orgasms. Well, unless you’re past 65 years of age, and really have no interest in fathering any more children, this issue can be very important to a lot of men. Some of the people who commented were in their late 30’s and 40’s and the doctor failed to mention that essentially being sterile was even a side-effect. I had to pull the information out of my urologist, as he wouldn’t volunteer anything negative about the procedure.

The conversation went something like this:

Damien: Are there any side effects with Greenlight PVP?

Uro: You’ll spend overnight in the hospital with a catheter, and then you’ll be home the next morning.

Damien: So, I don’t have to worry about any potential side effects or problems?

Uro: Oh, you’ll have retrograde ejaculation, that’s all.

Damien: What’s that?

Uro: Oh that’s when your semen goes into your bladder instead of out of your penis. It takes the course of least resistance, so it’s just more convenient for it to go into the bladder.

Damien: So, in other words, I won’t be able to orgasm [normally].

Uro: Yes. But don’t worry, you can still get an erection and orgasm. You just won’t have any sperm or seminal fluid.

Damien: So, in other words, I won’t be able to father children.

Uro: Well, how old are you?

Damien: I just turned 50, and haven’t completely given up the idea of having children.

Uro: Just go to a fertility clinic. They’ll have you urinate in a cup after you orgasm and then collect the sperm through a special process. You can still have kids, but you’ll have a “test-tube” baby.

Damien: Can I bank my sperm before the operation?

Uro: Sure, just let me know now, because it takes a while, and our surgeries book up quickly.

Damien: How much does it cost to bank sperm?

Uro: I’m not sure, but I think $300 a year is a pretty good average.

Damien: Oh, Ok, Thanks. Let me think about it.

Also, I’ve read where retrograde ejaculation occurs 10% of the time, 30% of the time, 33% of the time, 50% of the time (with a 10% chance of getting it back within a year), 90% of the time, and 100% of the time. I asked my urologist which number to believe, and he said with 100% certainty that it would occur, due to the ball-valve BPH problem that I have.

So, at this point I have the surgery on hold, while I can do more investigation.

Thanks for reading, Damien
R Damien

Boulder Creek, CA

#257 Oct 25, 2008
Ok, me again. This is where I’d like to share my thoughts and ideas about living with BPH, and hope for the future.

My problems are I can’t go for more than an hour or two, without having to urinate. Also, it can be pretty “urgent” when I have to go. Unlike some guys who have to get up 3-5 times during the night to urinate, I guess I’m lucky in the sense that I usually just get up once (sometimes twice). I still have a problem that requires surgery, I’m just doing my best to postpone it.

A few things I’ve found out that I’d like to share. If you’re giving PVP surgery second thoughts, I hope these ideas can work for you, as they have for me.

1) If you don’t take Avodart, start. There are few side effects, and it’s the best thing out there for slowing down the growth of the prostate. Also, it helps men with male-pattern baldness, so if you want a fuller head of hair, Avodart might help you with that as well. Some men, just take it for baldness, but I don’t think it’s legal to prescribe it for that purpose. My prostate is still growing, even with Avodart, but at least it’s helping to postpone the inevitable. And yes, I have a full head of hair, and people think I look about 15 years younger than I really am.

2) Flomax is good, but I’m reading that Uroxatral/Xatral is better. Based on the literature I’ve read, Flomax has a 60% success rate in fully voiding the bladder, whereas Uroxatral has an 85% success rate in fully voiding the bladder. Also, there is no retrograde ejaculation with Uroxatral, so the dry orgasms you get with Flomax may be a thing of the past. If Flomax makes you loopy or dizzy, though, you’ll probably still experience that with Uroxatral. I believe what I’ve mentioned are the only differences between the two medications.

3) I read on a urological website that we only have so many “pushes” when we urinate. In other words, you can push about 6 or 8 times, and then the bladder stops, gives up, and says its done. So, as it gets more difficult to urinate a good stream, we keep pushing and pushing. I tried a different approach. I just pushed once on the bladder to get the stream going and then let go until the very end. In other words, I saved my pushes to the end, when I thought my bladder was completely empty, and had better success in voiding more urine. I’d say I was able to void about 25% more urine by pushing at the end, instead of throughout the entire urination. Okay, so it’s going to take longer to urinate, and you’re going to hear more of a tinkle, than the piss of a racehorse, but the goal is to get as much urine out of your bladder at one time as possible.

More to follow.

Damien
R Damien

Boulder Creek, CA

#258 Oct 25, 2008
Here's the rest.

4) I’ve tried many of the herbs and they seem to help. I personally like the Ultra Natural Prostate formula from Life Extension ( www.lef.org ), along with their Pumpkin Seed formula. Pumpkin seed supposedly acts like flomax, in relaxing the smooth muscles so you can urinate easily. Get a formula that has saw-palmetto, beta-sistosterol, and quercitin to help keep the prostate from growing. Also, sesame lignans in the formula have been shown to reduce the chance of getting prostate cancer by up to 85%.

5) Also, because I have to urinate frequently, I stopped drinking a lot of liquids. Big mistake. My thought was, well if I don’t drink, I won’t have to pee. My urologist said my bladder shrunk to half its normal size which makes me urinate even more frequently. So, on my days off from work, I started to drink twice as much water, and sure enough, my bladder is getting bigger. Because it’s bigger, I can now hold more liquid before having to urinate. I’m working my way up from peeing every 30 minutes to an hour, to about 2-1/2 hours without an urgent trip to the bathroom.

6) Also, I’ve read that some of the guys out there are taking Detrol L.A. to decrease the frequency and urgency in urination. I took it also, but then my urologist told me to get off of it immediately. You’re not supposed to take Detrol L.A. if you have urinary retention because it can make things worse. If you’re urine backs up into your kidneys there could be hell to pay. Also, Detrol made my heartbeat race, and my blood pressure skyrocket, and I felt loopy. So, I found another herbal product that works well, without any side effects whatsoever. It’s called “Prostane” and it’s made by Himalaya Products. It’s not easy to find so you’ll probably have to google it. I take one pill before I see a movie at the theater, am driving more than an hour, or about to go into a business meeting. For some reason, every time I take it, I don’t get the urge to urinate immediately, and I can usually go about 3 hours before having to pee. I can still sense that I have to go to the bathroom, but it’s more gradual, like when I was younger, instead of a 30-second warning. I don’t know how it works, but it does a nice job of preventing bladder spasms and that feeling that you have to go immediately.

7) There are quite a few new procedures coming on the horizon that might be preferred to TURP, Holap, Prolieve, or Greenlight PVP. I’m currently looking into Biolitec’s EVOLVE LIFE, Nymox NX-1207, and Botox. The latter two are essentially injections that are done in the urologist’s office that shrink the prostate, and/or prevent it from growing. Botox supposedly will be approved by the FDA next year, but at this time, I don’t know how good it is. Right now, I'm hoping to hold off for NX-1207. It's supposed to shrink the prostate by about 40% with a single needle injection. They finished their 5-year clinical trials last month, and looks promising.

Ok, well all for now. Perhaps surgery is the answer if meds aren’t a viable option.

Damien
Robert NY

Peekskill, NY

#259 Oct 26, 2008
Tony wrote:
All that glitters is not gold....had the green light late sept 06. all was great until early feb 07, when preprocedure symptoms returned with a vengeance,even stronger than before....nocturia trippled, stream weaker than preprocedure, urgency more pronounced, etc. Urologist said "probably scar tissue as a result of the procedure". Scar tissue? Thought green light eliminated that.
Be cautioned and ask your urologist to fully
define ALL potential pitfalls.
I had the procedure on 09/18/08. After two weeks I had the same results as Tony. Frequent painfull sudden urges with constant groin pain. A recent scope shows scar tissue. Urologist says scar tissue must be removed. Hope I will not have to wear diapers the rest of my life. I wonder if the removeal of the scar tissue will help? Guess Tony and I are in the 5% of patients who develope scar tissue.
Roy - SE Wisconsin

Brookfield, WI

#260 Oct 26, 2008
Although I had issues related to the PVP (Sep 24) I can say that now I am much better than I was before. I didn't like having to wear a catheter for a week after the procedure. In addition, I had to self-cath myself twice a day for a week after that. Durring that time, I got an infection which put be back on antibiotics ( I took the last one last night).

I now seep all night. I have a force when I urinate that I havent' had in years. No pain any more and no retrograde ejaculation.

I am now very happy that I had the procedure and would recomend it.

I would also caution that you cannot create statistics only on who relates to this forum. Most of the people who have PVP done do not reply to this forum. For the most part, I believe that if a person has the procedure and is happy with the results, he won't go out of his way to say anything.
R Damien

Boulder Creek, CA

#261 Oct 26, 2008
Roy,

It sounds like that, despite some complications along the way, you're a happy statistic. It's been about a month now since your surgery, so I hope that you continue to heal and have positive progress since your surgery.

Although I agree with your "caution" about overall generalizations based on the comments from this forum, I would like to mention a few things:

1) There are quite a few comments from people who were completely satisfied with the procedure, as well as those who were dissatisfied. Everyone has the opportunity to say positive things about the procedure, just as you have, and I, for one, as a nervous potential PVP patient, am extremely grateful for all of the input and posts;

2) There are very few comments, in any forum, about the pros and cons of a medical procedure. I find it remarkable that, over the course of 5 websites, I found about 400 comments addressing the Greenlight PVP procedure, which is still relatively new, compared to the "gold standard" TURP procedure. It's just amazing to me that so many people would take the time to write about this procedure. It literally took me a couple days to get through all the posts and comments.

3) The "statistics" listed are primarily based on people who are 3 months and beyond in the post-surgical procedure process, unless a complication was mentioned that was clearly out of the norm.

4) To even get 250 people who underwent the procedure to comment on it is remarkable. Most clinical trials on this procedure had between 40 and 100 patients in them--and these are the numbers that were used to create the "real" statistics on the procedure.

5) My cousin is a doctor, so I asked her to pull up clinical trial information from the medical journals on Greenlight PVP, and the "real" statistics are: a) the perioperative morbidity (which essentially means 'complications after surgery') for the PVP procedure is 38%, and 43% for the TURP (trans-urethral electro resection of the prostate) method. The breakdown of complications are very similar to what the people on the forums have mentioned.

6) So, the point you make certainly has validity. In the clinical trials for every 2 people(approximately) that had a successful, complication-free surgery, there was one person that didn't. Based on the forum comments, the reverse has been reported. For every 2 people (approximately) that had negative comments to say about the procedure, there was 1 person that was very happy with it.

I think the decision to have the procedure done is a very personal one, and depends on the quality of life of the individual. Certainly, if one has blocked urination, or can only urinate with a catheter, or has to urinate every 30 minutes, or is getting up 4-5 times a night to go to the bathroom, the procedure looks very, very attractive.

It's important, nonetheless, for the individual to be aware of what the potential risks and side-effects are, as in any surgical procedure, and ask oneself the famous question: Will I better off with the surgery, or without it?

I think why the forum comments are tilted toward the negative, is that the procedure has been presented to them as a "walk in the park". My urologist only mentioned retrograge ejaculation as a potential side effect, and that was after I had to pull it out of him. For the uninformed, there are many more "potential" side effects with this procedure, and I'm very grateful to everyone who posted, to help clarify and provide a better picture of what to potentially expect afterwards.

--Damien
Roy - SE Wisconsin

Brookfield, WI

#262 Oct 27, 2008
Damien

I completly agree. The decision is a personal one. No doctor has ever guarenteed the results of any surgery. People still die from simple procedures.

In my case, I felt that because i was still young (59), I decided to go for it. In addition, because I have worked in technology for many years (Chief Information Officer) I probably have more faith in the new technology that other would have.

Only speaking for myself, the procedure was not a walk in the park. However, it did in time provide the results I was hoping for. It's still early and I can have more complications. However I'm very satified right now.

Roy
Kevin

Brick, NJ

#263 Oct 27, 2008
"the procedure has been presented to them as a "walk in the park"."

Damien,

And therein is precisely the crux of the matter. The literature certainly paints it that way and now that I have had the surgery performed and read the many comments on this forum I see it is hardly a "walk in the park" by any means.

At this point (five days post op), I'll keep reading comments here and at the same time hope I follow Roy's path in my recovery.

Day four was the most uncomfortable with spasms every time I stood up followed by a difficult time urinating. Today, the spasms are not as severe or often. Tomorrow is my first follow up with my Urologist.

I remain optimistic.
Bud

AOL

#264 Oct 27, 2008
Had the Greenlight laser surgery in August of 2007. It worked for about one month. Now, over a year later, my situation is the same as prior to the surgery.
Doc says I should have a "terp".
They call this "the gold standard".
Not sure what I will do next.
Larry in Lakeland

Clearwater, FL

#265 Oct 29, 2008
I had the proceedure on 9/17/2008. I'm 66 and in good health. I wore a cath for over 2 week after the proceedure. Tried to remove it but I had to replace it within 12 hours. Lots of pain and several trips to the ER because I was had to replace the cath. Of course I only had problems at 2 A.M.

It's now 10/29. I feel great. No problems. It took a lot to get here but I'm glad I had the proceedure.

My Urologist gave me a booklet and little information about the proceedure. Too many of these docs are poor communicators. I did get most of my info from the internet. Thank goodness he was better at doing the proceedure than passing on information.

Tell me when this thread is updated:

Subscribe Now Add to my Tracker

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

Prostate Cancer Discussions

Title Updated Last By Comments
Plasma button surgery for BPH (Dec '11) Aug 20 Dave 208
GreenLight Laser Surgery Complications (May '07) Aug 18 NJRetiree 1,444
green light laser side effects (Sep '15) Aug 17 Vaxwiz1 13
Irritated Prostate After Sex? (Mar '09) Jul 29 Walter Mathau 7
News Having prostate cancer test an individual choice (Apr '09) Jul '16 Dave S 44
News Japan emperor intends to abdicate 'in a few yea... Jul '16 Ainu 7
News Jerry Davich: Guys, time to talk frankly about ... (Aug '11) Jun '16 Joe2242 7
More from around the web