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Interventional Radiology for enlarged prostate (BPH) treatment

Central Ohio Urology Group is pleased to offer a leading-edge initiative in the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH or enlarged prostate). This treatment is an alternative to traditional open surgery for BPH.

What is Interventional Radiology?

Interventional radiology (IR) is a medical specialty that performs minimally invasive treatments using radiologic imaging for procedure guidance. Interventional radiology treatments have become the primary method of care for a variety of conditions. IR treatments can offer less risk, less pain and shorter recovery time compared to surgery.

Benefits of Interventional Radiology for BPH

Interventional radiology is an alternative to traditional open surgery for BPH. Prostate Artery Embolization or PAE  allows our physicians to use the least invasive techniques with less risk, less pain and faster overall recovery time. Our new outpatient Interventional Radiology Center serves our patients in Columbus, OH and the central Ohio region.

Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH)

An aging prostate is a normal part of men’s lives. Nearly 20 million men in the U.S. have BPH.

BPH is a very common condition that affects:


of men by age 603

of men 60+4
of men by age 853
of men with moderate symptoms are unhappy about it1

As the prostate enlarges, it presses on and blocks the urethra, causing bothersome urinary symptoms such as:

  • Frequent need to urinate both day and night
  • Weak or slow urinary stream
  • A sense that you cannot completely empty your bladder
  • Difficulty or delay in starting urination
  • Urgent feeling of needing to urinate
  • A urinary stream that stops and starts

How prostate artery embolization works

Alternative to more invasive surgical procedures

PAE is an interventional radiology procedure that injects small particles directly into the arteries (blood vessels) that supply blood to the prostate, which leads to devascularization (decrease in blood supply) of the obstructing portion of the prostate.

When the prostate reduces in size (because the blood supply is slowed), there is lessening of obstruction along the urinary pathway and less pressure on the bladder.

Where does prostate artery embolization fit in with the other treatment options for BPH?

The standard approaches to address urinary bother associated with the enlarged prostate are procedures that remove the part of the prostate that blocks the urinary pathway and include TURP, GreenLight Laser and HOLEP. These procedures can provide excellent outcomes for patients but are associated with potential hazards which can include sexual dysfunction, bleeding (which may require blood transfusion) and incontinence.

Alternative minimally invasive surgical techniques now available include UroLift and Rezum. Of note, the minimally invasive procedures are restricted by the size of the prostate, and if the prostate is too large, then the minimally invasive techniques are less likely to provide benefit.

PAE is an increasingly used treatment option for the management of lower urinary tract symptoms associated with prostate enlargement (BPH). It provides an innovative and effective alternative to surgical procedures and offers the opportunity for fewer hazards related to treatment.

How is prostate artery embolization done?

The PAE procedure is carried out by an interventional radiologist. A tiny catheter is placed through the artery in the groin (called the femoral artery) and directed under x-ray vision to the prostate artery, so that small particles can be placed into the prostate artery to decrease the blood supply to the prostate.  It is an outpatient procedure, carried out with sedation, or a “twilight sleep,”  and does not require general anesthesia.

What are the benefits, and what are the potential hazards?

The PAE procedure can lead to improvement in urination, with reduction of bothersome symptoms and improvement in quality of life.

Potential burdens of treatment include the post-operative temporary presence of blood in the urine, blood in the semen and a temporary (5-7 days average) increase in urinary frequency. There is a rare potential for urinary tract infection, or urinary catheterization or skin discoloration, however these are not encountered frequently. Patients typically do not have bothersome pain after the procedure. The procedure does not also typically involve placing a urinary catheter or anything via the penis.

These conditions can now be treated in our new, office-based, outpatient Interventional Radiology suite located in Worthington.


350 W. Wilson Bridge Road Worthington, OH 43085

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