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What Is UroLift for BPH and Can It Cure ED?

Highlights

  • Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is a condition characterized by prostate enlargement.
  • BPH symptoms include bladder and urinary problems, pelvic pain, and sexual dysfunction.
  • The UroLift system is a minimally invasive, in-office procedure that provides rapid relief of BPH symptoms. 
  • UroLift doesn’t cause new, sustained erectile dysfunction (ED) or ejacualatory problems. It may even improve them. 
  • Cialis for daily use is approved to treat enlarged prostate and ED at the same time. 
  • Find the best treatments for erectile dysfunction with eDrugstore.

Many men will experience prostate enlargement as they age. Fortunately, there are effective treatments for lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) and erectile dysfunction (ED) caused by BPH. UroLift can provide rapid relief from BPH, while ED medications can help you to recover your erectile function. 

What Is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)?

BPH is a condition where the prostate and surrounding tissue enlarges or expands. Your prostate often gets larger as you age. In many men, it becomes large enough to cause problems. BPH shouldn’t be confused with prostate cancer, as it is a benign condition that doesn’t always require treatment. 

Your risk of developing BPH symptoms increases with age. An estimated one-third of men will develop BPH by the time they reach 60. Close to 90 percent of men over 80 have BPH. 

BPH symptoms include:

  • Dribbling at the end of urination
  • Feeling unable to empty the bladder
  • Frequent urination, especially at night
  • Increased urgency to urinate
  • Pelvic pain
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Weak urine stream

BPH symptoms may become more severe if they are left untreated, but most men with mild symptoms will be advised to use the watchful waiting method before starting a treatment plan. 

How Does BPH Affect Erectile Function?

Prostate conditions and their treatment can cause or contribute to sexual dysfunction. Specifically, men with BPH often experience ED and ejaculatory problems. A study examining the connection between BPH and ED found that 96 percent of patients with BPH or LUTS also experienced ED. 

Research presents several potential explanations for the connection between BPH and ED, such as:

  • Medication use. The medications or treatments someone uses for BPH may cause or contribute to sexual dysfunction. For example, finasteride is commonly prescribed for BPH, but it may cause ED and reduced libido in men who take it.
  • Prostate size. Larger prostates are correlated with reduced erectile function and sexual satisfaction.  
  • Severe LUTS. The more severe your LUTS, the more likely you are to experience ED. 

What Is UroLift?

Doctor talking to his male patient

UroLift is an FDA-approved treatment for BPH. UroLift uses the prostatic urethral lift procedure, which is considered an effective and minimally invasive treatment for BPH symptoms. Because it’s an outpatient option that’s less invasive than surgery, so men bounce back faster.

How Does UroLift Work?

The UroLift system includes a UroLift delivery device and small, permanent UroLift implants. The procedure is minimally invasive and completed in an outpatient setting. 

Here’s what you can expect:

  • Delivery device placement. Your provider will place the UroLift delivery device through the obstructed urethra.
  • Implant placement. Small UroLift implants will be inserted into the prostate to lift or hold the enlarged prostate tissue out of the way of the urethra. 
  • Delivery device removal. Your provider will remove the UroLift delivery device, which will leave your urethra unobstructed. 

Who Can Use UroLift?

Your provider can help you to determine if the UroLift system is right for you. You may qualify for the procedure if you are a male over 45 years of age and currently living with BPH symptoms. Men with allergies to nickel, titanium, or stainless steel may not be good candidates for UroLift treatment.

How is UroLift Different from Other BPH Treatments?

You may prefer UroLift to daily medications or invasive surgeries. 

The UroLift system stands out among other BPH treatments in the following ways:

  • It’s less invasive. The procedure can relieve prostate obstruction and open the urethra without cutting, heating, or removal of prostate tissue. 
  • It has great results. Clinical results show that patients report greater symptom relief following UroLift than from medication. 
  • Recovery is faster. Research demonstrates that recovery from UroLift is faster than recovery from surgeries for BPH. 
  • Side effects are minimal. UroLift may cause mild to moderate side effects. Most side effects are temporary and resolve within two to four weeks of the procedure. Your risk of side effects depends on your individual health factors. 
  • It’s less likely to cause ED. A large research study following patient outcomes demonstrated that there were no cases of new, sustained ED or ejaculatory dysfunction following the PUL procedure. 

Can UroLift Help With ED?

Research supports the UroLift System for faster recovery and reduced sexual dysfunction side effects. Other BPH therapies, such as laser treatment, daily medication use, and transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) can all cause ED. UroLift is not likely to cause ED. 

While it’s not intended to treat ED, the manufacturer of UroLift announced results of a meta-analysis by Claus Roehrborn, MD, of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, which found that patients treated with UroLift reported significant improvements in ejaculatory and erectile function up to 2 years after the procedure. Four years after treatment, they still reported improved sexual satisfaction.

(Note: We were unable to access the actual presentation by Dr. Roehrborn, and it’s important to note that these results were published on the website of the manufacturer of UroLift.) 

Can ED Drugs Treat BPH?

Prescription lifestyle medications can be used to treat ED caused by BPH. Medications like Viagra, Cialis, and Levitra are effective at treating ED in most men. 

Recently, ED drugs have been studied for their use in treating BPH as well, and Cialis for daily use has been approved for the treatment of both ED and BPH. Cialis for daily use is currently the only ED drug used to treat BPH and ED at once. 

Many men benefit from the tadalafil/finasteride combination pill. Finasteride is FDA approved to treat BPH, but it can cause ED if taken on its own. Tadalafil is the generic form of Cialis and is effective at treating ED. If you have BPH and erectile dysfunction, combining both treatments in one pill makes it easier to manage your medications. 

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