During prostate laser surgery, a doctor inserts a fiber-optic scope into the urethra through the tip of the penis and directs a laser through the scope to shrink or destroy excess prostate tissue blocking the flow of urine, explains Mayo Clinic. Several types of laser surgery are available.
The type of laser surgery used to treat an enlarged prostate depends on the size of the prostate gland, the patient's health, the types of laser equipment available and the surgeon's training, according to Mayo Clinic. Photoselective vaporization of the prostate uses a laser to vaporize excess prostate tissue blocking the urethra. Holmium laser ablation of the prostate uses a different type of laser to vaporize excess tissue. Holmium laser enucleation of the prostate uses the holmium laser to cut away excess tissue the surgeon then renders into tiny pieces and removes using a tool called a morcellator.
Laser surgery has several advantages over other surgical methods of treating an enlarged prostate, states Mayo Clinic. Laser surgery has a low risk of bleeding, making it a safer option for men who take anticoagulant medications. Unlike procedures such as transurethral resection of the prostate, laser surgery can be performed as an outpatient procedure or requires only an overnight hospital stay. Patients usually recover from laser surgery in less time than traditional surgeries and often do not need a catheter for more than 24 hours.