Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is GreenLight™ Therapy covered by insurance?
Medicare and most private insurance plans cover the procedure.
Where is the procedure performed?
The procedure can be performed in a hospital outpatient center or an office-based surgical facility. Typically, no overnight stay is needed. However, when a patient travels a long distance, has other medical conditions to consider, or is in frail condition, an overnight stay may be recommended.
Do I have to stay in the hospital after a GreenLight™ procedure?
GreenLight™ is generally an outpatient procedure. Typically, no overnight stay in the hospital is required, but it will depend on your individual condition.
Will I have 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 medications.
Will I need to wear a catheter?
Many patients do not require a catheter following the procedure. If one is required, it is typically removed in less than 24 hours. However, patients with compromised bladder function or those who require prolonged catheterization as a result of severe urinary symptoms may require a catheter for a longer period of time.
Will the GreenLight™ Laser Therapy treatment affect my sexual function?
Less than 1% of patients experience sexual dysfunction. However, 36% of patients experience retrograde ejaculation after the procedure.
How long before my symptoms improve?
Most patients experience very rapid relief of symptoms and improvement in urine flow within 24 hours of the procedure. However, medical history, health conditions, and other factors can influence treatment and recovery.
Will I continue to need BPH medications after the GreenLight™ Laser Therapy treatment?
As with any medication, ask your doctor what regimen is appropriate for you. However, most patients are able to discontinue taking their BPH medications within a few weeks of treatment.
How soon can I return to work and other normal activities?
Most patients can resume normal activities within a couple of days. Strenuous activities can be resumed within 2 weeks. Your urologist will discuss this and your specific condition with you during your consultation.
Is BPH a type of cancer?
Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) is not a type of cancer and it is not known to influence the risk of cancer.
How long do the results last?
Clinical studies report that GreenLight™ Laser Therapy offers rapid and lasting symptom relief for at least 5 years.
How many GreenLight™ procedures have been performed?
More than 500,000 patients worldwide have been treated with the GreenLight™ Laser System.
Can I have a GreenLight™ Laser procedure if I've had previous enlarged prostate treatments or surgery?
Many patients who have had previous treatments have been successfully treated with GreenLight™.
My doctor has recommended that I have a TURP. Can I still have the GreenLight™ procedure?
In general, patients suitable for TURP can be considered for a GreenLight™ procedure. However, you and your doctor will need to make that determination based upon your individual condition and desired outcomes.
How do I know if I am a candidate for GreenLight™?
Only your urologist can determine if you are a candidate, based upon your history and physical examination, as well as his or her clinical judgment
What can you expect the day of your procedure?
On the day of your procedure, you will come to the treatment center. You should have someone drive you home since this is an outpatient procedure. Keep in mind that different patients may require a different treatment regimen.
Before treatment, your physician may give you medication to help you relax during the procedure. You may also receive medication to help you avoid infections.
You may be asked to empty your bladder.
You will be brought into the procedure room and moved into the treatment bed where you will lie on your back. You will be provided anesthesia that will allow you to sleep through the entire procedure. Depending on the treatment center, other types of anesthesia may be used, including spinal block or a nerve block.
Once you are asleep or the anesthesia block takes effect, your physician will insert a cystoscope through your urethra. The laser fiber is introduced through the cystoscope and advanced into the urethra at the location of the prostate. The physician systematically vaporizes the enlarged prostate tissue until the obstruction is removed.
At the end of the procedure, the physician may insert a temporary catheter to let urine drain from your bladder. You may experience mild discomfort, such as slight burning during urination, and trace amounts of blood in your urine for a week or so. Also, depending on the condition of your bladder, you may experience a greater urination frequency and urge to urinate. This will resolve over time as your bladder adjusts to removal of the obstruction in your urethra.
Following the GreenLight™ procedure, you will likely experience immediate improvement in flow and symptoms, but will possibly have mild short-term urgency and frequency or mild pain during urination. Blood in the urine occurs less frequently; however, retrograde or diminished ejaculate volume is common. You may require a catheter for a short time, which is dependent on the physician’s discretion.
What can you expect after your procedure?
Because this is an outpatient procedure, you will typically go home within a few hours of treatment. You should have someone drive you home after the procedure.
If a catheter was placed in your bladder at the end of the procedure, it will typically be removed within 24 hours. However, patients with compromised bladder function or those who require prolonged catheterization as a result of severe urinary symptoms may require a catheter for a longer period of time.
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, health condition, and other factors can influence treatment recovery. You may experience mild discomfort, such as slight burning during urination, and small amounts of blood in your urine for a week or so. Also, depending on the condition of your bladder, you may experience greater frequency and urge to urinate. This will resolve over time as your bladder adjusts to removal of the obstruction in your urethra. You may be given an antibiotic to help you avoid infection. For discomfort, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are options.
Typically, you may return to normal activities 2 to 3 days after the procedure. You should not engage in sexual activities for about 2 weeks following the procedure. Activities that may lead to blood in the urine, such as strenuous exercise (including heavy lifting, bike riding, or running on a treadmill) and working with vibrating equipment (sitting on lawnmowers or snow tractors), must also be avoided for at least 2 weeks.
Mild episodes of blood in urine are possible 1 to 2 weeks after the procedure, for which anti-inflammatory medication may be prescribed.