Transurethral microwave thermotherapy (TUMT) is an anesthesia-free, outpatient method of treating lower urinary tract symptoms due to benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH).
In this treatment, a specially designed antenna inside a catheter is inserted into the prostate through the urethra. This antenna is used to direct microwave energy into the prostate to heat and destroy enlarged tissue. During the procedure, cool water is circulated through the catheter to minimize patient discomfort, protect adjacent urethral tissues from excessive temperatures, and reduce the risk for serious side effects. Medication is often administered to reduce discomfort and help patients relax during the procedure.
Following treatment, anti-inflammatory medication and antibiotics may be prescribed. Most patients can resume normal activity immediately after treatment. Destroyed prostatic tissue is reabsorbed by the body or discharged in the urine over the course of 6 to 12 weeks and BPH symptoms gradually improve during this time.
Any side effects usually resolve without intervention within a few weeks of treatment and include the following:
- Frequent urination
- Pink discharge in the urine or around the catheter
- Soreness in the lower abdomen
- Urethral inflammation and swelling (most patients require catheterization for 2–5 days)
- Urgency (even after removal of the catheter)