TUMT (transurethral microwave therapy)

TUMT (transurethral microwave therapy) uses microwave energy to harden parts of the prostate tissue. This process is called coagulation. The treated part of the prostate is absorbed by the body or passes with urine after the procedure. The aim of TUMT is to reduce the size of the prostate and to improve the symptoms.

TUMT is recommended for men with a prostate between 30 to 100 millilitres who prefer minimally invasive treatment or who do not want to have surgery because of other medical conditions.

Advantages of TUMT

  • Is performed with numbing medication (local anaesthesia)
  • No hospital stay in most cases
  • Low risk of complications
  • No need to stop blood-thinning medication

Disadvantages of TUMT

  • Less effective for large prostates and severe difficulty urinating
  • Use of catheter at home for several days after the procedure
  • Slow improvement of symptoms and flow of urine
  • May need another treatment after several years because the prostate continues to grow

How is TUMT performed?

For TUMT, you will receive numbing medicine at the area to be treated (local anaesthesia). Sometimes it is combined with intravenous anaesthetic.

To begin, the doctor places a tube-like tool called a resectoscope in the urethra (the tub that carries urine out of the body). The resectoscope has a microwave antenna and a balloon as well as a camera. This allows the doctor to see a high-quality image of the prostate on a video monitor.

The resectoscope is moved through the urethra into the bladder. The antenna heats up the prostate tissue with microwave energy, and the balloon keeps the antenna in place inside the prostate (Fig. 1).

After the procedure, a different catheter will be placed in your bladder to help you pass urine. You will need this catheter for several days until the urethra is healed and you can urinate on your own. The catheter is removed by the urologist at the hospital or clinic.

Fig. 1: The heat generated by the microwave antenna coagulates parts of the enlarged prostate tissue.
Fig. 1: The heat generated by the microwave antenna coagulates parts of the enlarged prostate tissue.