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The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended that men who suffer with an enlarged prostate could now be treated with technology that minimises the risks of serious complications.

The NICE-recommended PLASMA system involves bipolar electrosurgery. It uses electrodes to cut out prostate tissue and stop any local bleeding afterwards and treatment technique reduces the risks of serious complications, the NICE has said in its final guidance for NHS adoption.

“Clinical outcomes are the same as the conventional monopolar transurethral resection of the prostate (mTURP), but PLASMA avoids the risk of transurethral resection syndrome and reduces the need for blood transfusion and the length of hospital stay,” the NICE has said.

NICE’s Medical Technologies Advisory Committee examined evidence that using the plasma system is a clinically effective treatment and noted that the evidence shows that the plasma system reduces the risk of transurethral resection syndrome and reduces the need for blood transfusion compared with mTURP.

Meindert Boysen, Deputy Chief Executive and Director of the Centre for Health Technology Evaluation at NICE, said: “When men who suffer from an enlarge prostate have exhausted non-surgical options like lifestyle changes or medication, surgery is often the only option.

“For those with more severe symptoms or complications, such as urinary infections or a complete stoppage in the urinary tract, a surgical procedure using electrodes to cut out prostate tissue and stop any local bleeding afterwards (the PLASMA system) can make a difference.

“Surgery can completely change a man’s quality of life and the evidence seen by our committee shows this treatment is clinically effective and cost-saving to the NHS.”

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