Trans-Urethral Resection of the Prostate (TURP)

This is the gents' operation and is done where the prostate has enlarged to the point where it makes it hard to pass urine and empty your bladder fully. Your anaesthetic may be either a general or a 'spinal' one. With a general anaesthetic you will, of course, be fully asleep.

A spinal anaesthetic involves the injection of local anaesthetic into the spinal fluid using a very fine needle. This temporarily numbs the body from the waist down and stops leg movements. The effect lasts several hours and gradually wears off. There is no pain from the operation while the 'spinal' is working. An intravenous drip and heart and blood pressure monitoring are all started beforehand as blood pressure may decrease a little because of the 'spinal'. Sedation is usually given during the operation. Very, very rarely you may develop a nasty headache after a 'spinal' - the chances of this are maintaining bedrest (for 12 hours post op)

The choice of using either general or spinal anaesthesia is made on the clinical grounds of age and overall health of the patient.

Because a 'TURP' is associated with a certain amount of bleeding, a blood transfusion is occasionally required. A sample of your blood will be sent to pathology before the operation just in case a 'cross-match' is needed. If you want to consider donating your own blood beforehand for self-transfusion during your operation, you should discuss this with your surgeon a long time before the planned operation date.

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