Prostate Artery Embolization - Leaders Of Minimally Invasive Treatment For Enlarged Prostate
Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is a common condition that occurs when men get older. The prostate enlarges and blocks the flow of urine that comes out from the bladder. This can cause severe urinary symptoms that can affect quality of life.
Over 50% of men aged over 60 struggle with enlarged prostate problems. Nowadays, nonsurgical treatments such as prostate Artery Embolization (PAE) ensure the management of an enlarged prostate is easier and more comfortable than ever.
After this simple outpatient treatment, you can expect to:
- Live the life you used to lead
- Maintain optimum urinary and sexual function, and
- Improve your quality of life
- It is paid for by the insurance!
Don’t suffer in silence!
What Is Prostate Artery Embolization (PAE)?
Prostate Artery Embolization or PAE, is a ground-breaking, minimally invasive procedure that treats a condition known as Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH). This condition is more commonly known as an enlarged prostate.
PAE works by slowing down the blood flow to the artery that feeds the prostate. The lack of blood, in turn, causes the prostate to shrink, thereby relieving urinary issues.
Here’s how the process works:
- Step #1 – A tiny pinhole is made into the wrist or groin, and a small catheter is directed into the artery supplying blood to the prostate
- Step #2 – A series of harmless micro-particles known as micro-spheres are injected into the catheter. Micro-spheres work to slow down the blood supply to the prostate.
- Step #3 – The process is then repeated on the other side
While other alternatives include surgical processes like Transurethral Resection of the Prostate (TURP), PAE therapy is quick, virtually pain-free and provides long-lasting treatment outcomes.
Results After Treatment
Following treatment with Prostate Artery Embolization, the prostate begins to shrink within 24-48 hours. However, most people notice a difference within 1-2 months. Over a six-month period, the prostate reduces in size by around 40%.
According to recently published data, PAE provides a satisfactory improvement in 67% - 92% of all cases treated and can last for 3-4 years.
What To Expect From Your Procedure?
- Lower risk of complications
- No hospital stay
- No sutures, scarring or general anesthesia
- Relief from uncomfortable prostatic symptoms
- Resume normal activities (typically within a few days)
Why PAE May Be The Right Choice For You
You may be a good candidate for PAE therapy if you:
- Experience symptoms of BPH that don’t respond to surgery
- Do not want or cannot undergo a surgical procedure
- Have exceptionally enlarged glands and cannot undergo TURP, RESUM, Laser or other prostate treatments
- Prefer a simple outpatient treatment with little or no downtime
What Is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) – All You Need To Know
Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) is a prevalent condition in men over 60.
The prostate is a small gland that sits below the bladder, engulfing the urethra (the tube that removes urine from the body). The primary function of the prostate is to aid the production of semen. But at the same time, it acts as an on/off switch, regulating urine flow.
When the prostate gland is enlarged, it reduces urine flow from the bladder and sometimes blocks it entirely.
Signs And Symptoms of BPH And Treatment Options
An enlarged prostate (BPH) can lead to symptoms like:
- A feeling of wanting to urinate but can’t
- Straining while urinating
- The feeling of being unable to empty your bladder fully
- Intermittent starting and stopping of urine stream while toileting
- Dribbling at the end of urination
- A weak urine stream
- Waking up multiple times a night to urinate
If you are currently experiencing Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) symptoms, you should know that they can worsen over time if not treated. Here’s what the research tells us:
- The risk of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) increases once men hit the age of 40
- By the time a man hits 60, more than 50% of men report prostate problems
- Hispanic and Black men are at greater risk of developing BPH than their white male counterparts
- Obesity appears to increase the risk of BPH, while continued exercise reduces the risk
- Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia can be hereditary – Men with male relatives who have previously had BPH are at risk of developing the symptoms themselves
- Certain conditions like diabetes have also been linked to BPH
Your Treatment Options
The good news is that there are several available treatments that can reduce the size of your prostate, such as:
- Transurethral Resection of the Prostate (TURP) – a surgical procedure that removes some of the prostate tissue
- Aquablation – shrinkage of the prostate using a heat-free waterjet
- Rezum water vapour therapy – A steam-induced treatment that removes excess prostatic tissue
- UroLift – Tiny implants designed to hold the prostatic urethra open and clear any obstruction
- Prostate Artery Embolization (PAE) - Inserting micro-particles via a catheter into the prostate artery to reduce any blood supply to the prostate, thus shrinking it over time.
While all treatments have pros and cons, look at the tables below to see how PAE stacks up against other methods.
Prostate Artery Embolization vs Other Treatments
PAE vs Aquablation
|Good after a 12-month follow-up||Good after a 12-month follow-up|
|Well documented||Limited data|
Side effects or Associations
|Low risk||Some bleeding-related complications|
PAE vs Rezum Water Vapour Therapy
Very effective on prostates > 80cm3
Works best on prostates 30 - 80cm3
Low risk of complications
Risks include a decrease in ejaculatory volume and an increase in urinary frequency
Little to no discomfort
Minor discomfort during the procedure
PAE vs UroLift Implants
Proven effective in prostate glands over 80 cm3
Best in prostate glands less than 80 cm3
Transient blood in urine and acute urinary retention – although only temporary
Burning when urinating, pelvic pain, urgent need to urinate – symptoms typically disappear within 2-4 weeks
PAE vs TURP
2-3 day hospital stay
Possibility of retrograde ejaculation
Could be long term
May cause erectile dysfunction
About The MINT Prostate Center
The prostate Centre at MINT is the first and only outpatient center to offer nonsurgical PAE treatment for Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia in St Louis. So if you have been diagnosed with an enlarged prostate, Dr. Goke Akinwande can help you relieve uncomfortable symptoms of BPH without undergoing major surgery.
If you feel that you have any signs or symptoms of an enlarged prostate, schedule an appointment with the team at MINT. Dr. Akinwande has the expertise and experience to improve your quality of life using the latest nonsurgical PAE technique.
About Dr. Akinwande
Dr. Goke Akinwande (Dr. A) is an extensively published, board-certified leader in minimally invasive, nonsurgical procedures. He is a vascular and endovascular specialist who has trained at prestigious institutions such as the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) and the Johns Hopkins Hospital.
In addition, Dr. A held a faculty position at Washington University/Barnes Jewish Hospital, providing him with the best foundation and ability to deliver optimum care to his patients.
During his medical career, he has also delivered national and international presentations and has trained many medical students, residents, and fellows in the latest non-invasive vascular and endovascular procedures.
Phone our St Louis office (general inquiries) at 314-255-2204
Alternatively, if you’d like to contact us online, please fill in your details in the short form below, and a member of our MINT team will get back to you within 24 hours.
The Prostate center at MINT is St. Louis first and only outpatient center to offer PAE treatment for Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH). Ask us about PAE treatment today!
At MINT we put patient convenience as our highest priority. We truly believe in compassionate and evidence based medicine. We have 3 convenient locations and we will be adding more in the future. Sometimes, we are contacted by patients that live very far away. For those patients, we provide access to telemedicine so that we can perform the entire initial consultation at your place of convenience. Call us today to schedule a visit or telemedicine consultation. You can also request an online consultation.
Frequently Asked Questions
What causes BPH?
The cause of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia is unknown, but it’s thought to be linked to hormonal changes in the body as a man ages. As the hormonal balance changes, it can trigger a difference in the prostate, causing it to swell.
What’s the difference between BPH and prostate cancer? Does having BPH put me more at risk for prostate cancer?
As the name suggests, the word ‘benign’ in BPH means that the condition is neither cancerous nor leads to cancer or increases the risk of getting prostate cancer. Although some symptoms may be the same, prostate cancer can spread to other body parts while BPH cannot.
Can lifestyle factors such as diet, exercise and weight play a role in whether you develop BPH?
Recent findings suggest that lifestyle and metabolic factors such as obesity, stress and a meat and fat-heavy diet may signify an increased risk of developing Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia.
What does prostate artery embolization involve?
Patients who visit our Prostate Center at MINT should know that we carry out PAE treatment in a nonsurgical outpatient setting.
At the beginning of the procedure, the doctor will administer a mild anesthetic. Then, a small pinhole is made in either the wrist or the groin.
From there, a small catheter is inserted and directed into the artery that feeds the prostate.
Once the catheter is in position, Dr. A will inject a series of microspheres into the bloodstream. Upon doing so, the microspheres slow down the blood supply to the prostate, causing it to shrink over time.
The process is then repeated on the opposing side using the same incision.
Treatment takes 45 minutes to one hour to complete, although our team may want to monitor you for longer until any anesthetic has worn off. At the end of the procedure, a simple band-aid is placed over the area, and you’re free to go home.
How long does PAE take to work?
Most patients will notice a change in symptoms within 24-48 hours, although it can take up to 6 months for the prostate to shrink significantly. Over a six-month period, the prostate can shrink by 40%, which should substantially improve urinary symptoms.
Is prostate artery embolization safe?
Yes. PAE is safe and well tolerated by most patients. In the first few days after the procedure, it’s normal to experience Post PAE syndrome, including slight nausea, mild fever and frequent urination. However, this is usually temporary, typically lasting only a few days.
Patients are advised to take their medications and follow any post-treatment instructions for a speedy recovery.
How long does the PAE procedure last?
The procedure lasts, on average, around 45 minutes, although we may ask the patient to remain with us for up to two hours to fully recover before going home.
Does the procedure hurt?
No. The process itself is comfortable. The only factor that patients report is having to lie flat on their back for the duration.
Do I need a catheter after prostate artery embolization?
A small catheter is used during the procedure and removed immediately after undergoing PAE. It is not necessary to wear one after this point.
How long does it take for the prostate to shrink after PAE treatment?
Over several months, the body begins to reabsorb the dead tissue resulting in the shrinkage of the prostate gland. Typically over a six-month period, the prostate shrinks by up to 40% resulting in improved and less frequent urination.
How successful is PAE?
Prostate Artery Embolization has a high success rate, with over 90% of all cases experiencing relief within the first year. Unlike other treatments with unwanted sexual side effects, PAE has no impact on current sexual performance.
Does insurance cover PAE therapy?
Some insurances, including Medicare, cover the procedure, so it’s worth checking out your policy. For those that aren’t covered, we also provide payment plans to help you spread the cost of treatment.
NCBI - Prostate Artery Embolization—Review of Indications, Patient Selection, Techniques and Results
Science Direct – Minimally Invasive Treatments For Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia – A systematic Review And Network Analysis
NCBI – Epidemiology and Etiology of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia And Bladder Outlet Obstruction
Pub Med - Race/ethnicity, Obesity, Health Related Behaviors and the Risk of Symptomatic Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia: Results From The Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial
NCBI - Obesity and Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia: Clinical Connections, Emerging Etiological Paradigms and Future Directions
NCBI - Lifestyle Factors, Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia and Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms