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Journal of clinical laser medicine & surgery

Application of the holmium:YAG laser for prostatectomy.


PMID 9728126

Abstract

The authors review the current knowledge regarding the application of the Holmium: YAG laser for prostatectomy. Conventional surgical therapies for benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) are effective but associated with relatively high morbidity. Laser prostatectomy, using either Neodymium:YAG or potassium-titanyl-phosphate lasers, has emerged as a new and much safer operative approach to relieve symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia. However, these laser wavelengths possess key disadvantages that have limited their acceptability and dissemination in everyday urologic practice. THE authors review their own extensive experience in the development of clinical application of Holmium: YAG laser technology for prostatectomy, as well as the published reports in the current medical literature now dealing with this subject. In multiple clinical trials, Holmium:YAG laser resection of the prostate has proven efficacious in relieving symptomatic BPH. Both objective urodynamic measures of voiding outcomes and symptomatic improvement have been shown to be equivalent to standard electrocautery resection of the prostate. At the same time, these studies have demonstrated the superior safety and hemostasis of Holmium:YAG laser prostatectomy compared to electrocautery resection, similar to prior laser prostatectomy procedure. Unlike prior forms of laser prostatectomy, Holmium:YAG laser resection of the prostate acutely removes all obstructing prostate tissue, so that the postoperative catheterization requirement is typically only overnight and improvement in voiding is immediate. Current operative techniques and the latest technological developments to facilitate Holmium:YAG laser prostatectomy are described. Holmium: YAG laser prostatectomy combines the best features of prior laser prostatectomy technologies, including minimal complications and morbidity, with the efficacy and immediacy of voiding outcomes associated with conventional electrocautery resection of the prostate.

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