Greenlight Laser TURP

Greenlight laser TURP

Greenlight laser TURP (also called PVP) is a bloodless method for removing obstructive benign prostate enlargement (BPH). Through a cystoscope, a specially designed fiber that emits a green laser beam vapourises the prostate gland to leave a cavity that heals over the next 3 weeks.

Dr Chin doing Greenlight laser TURP
Prostate vaporized by the Greenlight laser

The advantage over conventional TURP is that the laser seals the blood vessels more effectively. General anaesthesia is given because it is a slower procedure and may even take up to 2 hours for large prostates. A catheter is still inserted into the bladder after the surgery but unlike conventional TURP, minimal irrigation fluid is needed. The catheter can be removed the next day without any worry of excess bleeding. As such, a hospital stay of just one day is possible compared to 3 to 4 days for standard TURP. The other advantage is that anticoagulant medication, such warfarin need not be stopped beforehand. Laser TURP is more expensive because of the added cost of the laser fiber and time taken.

Complications include:

  • bleeding. This is minimal and will clear over a week or two.
  • urinary retention. If so, the catheter will need to be re-inserted and left in for a few days more.
  • dysuria.This is an irritating feeling during urination and is due to the raw area within the prostate.