Objectives. Improved long-term results with respect to symptoms, voiding function, and quality of life (QOL) in patients with lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) are achieved with targeted high-energy transurethral microwave thermotherapy (TUMT) compared with alpha-blocker treatment alone. However, maximal improvement after TUMT is not attained until 3 to 6 months after treatment. Measures to provide earlier symptom relief and improved voiding function and QOL would add to the clinical utility of TUMT. The objective of the present study was to determine whether neoadjuvant and adjuvant alpha-blockade is capable of accelerating a post-TUMT decrease in LUTS of patients with BPH. Methods. In this randomized, prospective study of 81 patients with LUTS of BPH, 41 underwent TUMT with neoadjuvant and adjuvant tamsulosin (0.4 mg daily) treatment, and 40 had TUMT alone. International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS), peak urinary flow rate (Qmax), and QOL score were determined before treatment and at periodic intervals thereafter up to 12 weeks after TUMT. Results. Mean IPSS values in the TUMT plus tamsulosin group at 2 weeks (14.0, 95% confidence interval [CI] 13.1 to 14.9) and 6 weeks (8.6; 95% CI 7.7 to 9.5) were 15% and 24% lower, respectively, than those at 2 weeks (16.5, 95% CI 15.6 to 17.4) and 6 weeks (11.3, 95% CI 10.4 to 12.2) in the TUMT-alone group (P < 0.0005). However, by the final evaluation at 12 weeks, no significant difference between the groups in mean IPSS was evident. A similar temporal pattern of difference between the two study groups was also observed in QOL score. No significant between-group difference in mean Qmax was evident after TUMT. Urinary retention 1 week or more in duration occurred in 5 (12%) of 40 TUMT-alone group patients compared with 1 (2%) of 41 TUMT plus tamsulosin group patients. Conclusions. Neoadjuvant and adjuvant alpha-blocker treatment results in significantly greater early symptom reduction and QOL score improvement after TUMT, adding to the clinical utility of this minimally invasive treatment modality. In addition, post-TUMT complications such as urinary retention may be reduced.
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