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J Endourol. 2004 Mar;18(2):189-91.

Transurethral holmium laser enucleation of the prostate compared with transvesical open prostatectomy: 18-month follow-up of a randomized trial.

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  • 1Department of Urology, Auguste Viktoria Hospital, Berlin, Germany. uroavk@yahoo.com



This ongoing randomized study aims to find out whether transurethral holmium laser enucleation of the prostate (HoLEP) could be an alternative to open transvesical prostatectomy in patients with prostates >100 g.


A series of 120 urodynamically obstructed patients were randomized to HoLEP or open prostatectomy, 60 patients to each group. The HoLEP was performed with high-powered Ho:YAG lasers at 80 to 100 W (2.0 J, 40-50 Hz) and 550-nm bare laser fibers. The American Urological Association Symptom Scores, peak urinary flow rates, and postvoiding residual urine volumes were evaluated preoperatively and at 1, 3, 6, 12, and 18 months postoperatively. All complications were noted.


By the Mann-Whitney test, there was no significant difference between the HoLEP and open surgery groups in patient age (69.0 years HoLEP v 71.0 years open surgery), prostate volume (115 cc [range 100-230 cc] v 113 cc [100-230 cc], or weight of resected tissue (94 g [range 57-220 g] v 96 g [range 61-220 g]). There were significant differences in the mean operative time (136 v 91 minutes; P< 0.0001), mean hemoglobin loss (1.9 v 2.8 g/dL; P< 0.0001), median catheter time (1 day v 6 days; P< 0.0001), and median hospital stay (2 days v 10 days; P< 0.0001). Both HoLEP and open prostatectomy resulted in pronounced and lasting postoperative improvements in Symptom Scores, peak urinary flow rates, and postvoiding residual volumes (P< 0.0001). The differences between HoLEP and open prostatectomy were not significant at any interval for any parameter. Blood transfusions were required in 0 HoLEP patients v 8 open surgery patients. Arterial bleeding occurred in three patients in each group. Secondary apical resection was required in two HoLEP patients and no open surgery patients. Bladder neck contracture occurred in none of the HoLEP patients and two of those having open surgery. Thus, the total number of patients having complications was 7 with HoLEP and 13 with open surgery. There were no deaths in either group.


The HoLEP appears to be an endourologic alternative to open surgical enucleation of the prostate for large glands. It entails significantly less blood loss and a much shorter catheter time and hospital stay. The perioperative outcome strongly favors the holmium procedure. The rate of late complications is equally low with each procedure. The postoperative micturition improvement was significant and lasting and was equivalent in the two groups.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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