Prostate stent

A prostate stent is used in the treatment of benign prostatic enlargement. Prostate stents are used to keep the urethra open, which improves the flow of urine (Fig. 1). Stents are mainly recommended for men who are not fit for surgery but who are still able to empty the bladder on their own. They are used instead of an indwelling catheter.

Stents are not recommended as a permanent treatment option. You should consider stents only if you cannot tolerate numbing medicine (anaesthesia), which is needed for surgery.

Fig. 1: A prostate stent improves the flow of urine.
Fig. 1: A prostate stent improves the flow of urine.

How is the stent inserted?

The stent can be placed in the doctor’s office or a clinic under local anaesthetic. It is inserted into the urethra until the tip reaches the bladder (Fig. 2). The correct position is checked with an ultrasound or a cystoscope.

How long will it take me to get back to my daily activities?

Usually you can go back to your daily activities on the day of the procedure. There may be some blood in your urine and you may feel pain when you urinate. This can last up to several weeks.

You need to go to your doctor or the hospital right away if you:

  • Develop a fever
  • Are unable to urinate on your own
  • Have heavy blood loss or pain

Advantages of stents

  • Can be used instead of an indwelling catheter
  • No hospital stay
  • Numbing medicine is used only in the area where the procedure will be done (local anaesthesia)

Disadvantages of stents

  • The stent may shift
  • Pain while passing urine may last for some time after the procedure
  • Stent might not improve the flow of urine
  • Low risk of urinary incontinence
  • Risk of stone formation on the stent