prostatic artery embolization

Prostatic Artery Embolization: What It Is and Why Men Should Know About It

More than 60% of all men in their sixties have some symptoms of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH). However, just because it’s common, doesn’t mean that men impacted by BPH have to simply cope with it. Prostatic Artery Embolization (PAE) is a minimally invasive procedure used to treat lower urinary tract symptoms caused by BPH.

What is BPH?

Benign prostate hyperplasia is an enlargement of the prostate gland. As the prostate gets bigger, it may constrict or partly block the urethra causing lower urinary tract symptoms such as:

  • Urinary frequency
  • Dribbling at the end of urinating
  • Inability to urinate
  • Difficulty starting urination
  • Frequent urination throughout the night

For some, these symptoms can interfere with sleep and daily activities causing a further reduction in quality of life.

What is Prostatic Artery Embolization?

The procedure begins with a tiny incision in your upper thigh or wrist to gain access to your arterial system. Using specialized X-ray equipment, the endovascular specialist guides a catheter to the vessels that supply blood to the prostate. Once the catheter reaches the prostate, embolic material (the size of a grain of sand) enters the blood vessels. Which, in turn, decreases blood flow. Depriving the prostate of oxygenated blood will cause it to shrink, thereby improving your urinary symptoms.


PAE Benefits

Compared to traditional surgical methods, PAE offers many benefits.

  • Minimally invasive
  • Virtually no blood loss
  • Short recovery time
  • Low risk of sexual side effects
  • Low risk of urinary incontinence
  • Decreased discomfort
  • Decreased risk of infection
  • Improved quality of life

Are you a PAE candidate?

PAE is for men who are not satisfied with their current medications or treatment and do not wish to undergo surgery. PAE is also a great alternative for men who are ineligible for surgery. Curious to know more? Take our quiz to help you determine next steps.


Related Posts

Can Uterine Fibroids Cause Weight Gain?

Navigating Varicocele Treatment: Understanding Your Options

The BackTable Podcast Ep. 367 with Dr. Aaron Kovaleski