GreenLight Laser Therapy uses a laser to remove prostate tissue. The laser treatment is delivered through a thin, flexible fiber, which is inserted into the urethra through an instrument called a cystoscope. Our animation video, list of Q&A’s below, and the GreenLight Patient Education Brochure will help you learn more about the procedure.
How does GreenLight Laser Therapy work?
A small fiber is inserted into the urethra through a cystoscope. The fiber carries laser energy which quickly removes prostate tissue. The tissue removal will allow urine to pass through freely. Natural urine flow is rapidly restored and urinary symptoms are quickly relieved in most patients.
Do I have to stay in the hospital after a GreenLight procedure?
GreenLight is generally an out-patient procedure. Typically, no overnight stay in the hospital is required, but it will depend on your individual condition.
Will I experience discomfort during the procedure?
Your doctor will discuss anesthesia requirements, as well as pain medication to ensure your comfort during and after the procedure.
Will I experience discomfort after the procedure?
Most patients experience mild discomfort such as slight burning during urination for a week or so. This can be managed with mild pain and anti-inflammatory medication.
What are the risks and complications of GreenLight Laser Therapy?
All surgical treatments have inherent and associated risks. The most common risks associated with GreenLight and Photoselective Vaporization of the Prostate (PVP) are: hematuria; short term dysuria; and, urinary tract infections. You should talk with your doctor about benefits and risks before moving forward with any treatment.
How long will it be before I notice results?
Most patients experience very rapid relief of symptoms and a dramatic improvement in urine flow. This typically occurs within 24 hours of the procedure. However, medical history, your health condition, and other factors can influence treatment and recovery.
How soon can I return to work or normal activity?
Most patients can resume normal activities within a couple of days. Typically, strenuous activity can be resumed within 2 weeks. Your urologist will discuss this and your specific condition during your consultation.
Will there be any sexual side effects?
You should be able to have normal sexual experiences, including the same sensation of an orgasm, after the procedure. Some men may experience retrograde ejaculation, or dry climax. This does not affect erection or orgasm. If you are sexually active, you can look forward to remaining so.
How long do the results last?
Clinical studies are currently out to 5 years for GreenLight Laser Therapy. Studies are ongoing to determine patient outcomes beyond 5 years.
Is GreenLight Laser Therapy as effective as a surgery (TURP)?
Clinical studies have shown that GreenLight Laser Therapy provides comparable symptom relief to the traditional surgery (TURP), with fewer complications.*
How is GreenLight different than TURP (i.e., surgery: transurethral resection of the prostate)?
Enlarged prostate surgery, or TURP, has been the traditional form of treatment. It uses an electrical instrument to surgically cut and remove excess prostate tissue. Through the years, it has been considered the most effective at relieving symptoms and restoring urine flow. TURP is performed in a hospital and requires general anesthesia.
It also requires a hospital stay of 1 to 3 days, and a catheter. Side effects may include impotence, incontinence and bleeding. A 4 to 6 week recovery period is typical in most men following surgery.
GreenLight generally requires a hospital stay of less than 24 hours. It combines the effectiveness of surgery with a low risk of side effects and complications. Post-treatment catheterization may not be required, and the recovery time is significantly less than surgery, or TURP.
Is GreenLight Laser Therapy covered by insurance?
Medicare and most private insurers cover the GreenLight Laser Therapy procedure.
How long has GreenLight Laser Therapy been around?
GreenLight Laser Therapy has been marketed since May 2001. Over 500,000 patients have been treated worldwide with GreenLight.
How do I know if I am a candidate for GreenLight Laser Therapy?
Only your doctor can determine if you are a candidate for GreenLight Laser Therapy. GreenLight is generally appropriate for most symptomatic BPH patients. You and your doctor will assess your symptoms and desired outcomes together and determine the best course of treatment.
How do I know if I should have a GreenLight Laser Therapy procedure?
You and your doctor will assess your symptoms and desired outcomes together before choosing the best course of treatment for you.
* Thangasamy IA, Chalasani V, Bachmann A, Woo HH. Photoselective vaporisation of the prostate using 80-w and 120-w laser versus transurethral resection of the prostate for benign prostatic hyperplasia: a systematic review with meta-analysis from 2002 to 2012. Eur Urol. 2012 Aug;62(2):315-23. Epub 2012 May 4