Literatus: Dealing with ‘Turp’-A A +A
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
A CERTAIN practice has been common in synthetic drug treatments (so common it may be considered a cliché).
You start taking a prescription for one health problem and you end up having a new one. Of course that is not true for all synthetic medications. But given lack of long-term studies in most pharmaceutical drugs today, who knows what’s going to happen in the next 20 to 30 years after taking a particular regimen.
In history, many drugs have been pulled out from shelves because they later turned out to be potential killers, if not already one.
The classic case is that of finasteride, a treatment used against certain complications that transurethral resection of prostate (Turp) brings about.
Turp is a surgical intervention to treat acute urinary retention (AUR), a condition in which a person has a very urgent need to urinate but cannot. The physician has to order Turp, especially when patients have difficulty with catheter removal, when medical therapy fails, or when a catheter turns out to be unsuccessful.
Elderly men statistically experience AUR around the average age of 73, according to a 2005 study. In 1999, a study noted 33 percent of men suffered AUR by age 89. Clinical scientists blame this condition to sphere-shaped bacteria, which had been found present in 73 percent of prostate secretion samples studied.
A study published in 2006 (Medscape General Medicine) noted that finasteride has been used to treat many Turp complications. However, it reported that the drug also produces sexual dysfunction as it reduces the amount of semen obtained per ejaculation. It results not only in ejaculation disorders but also to impotence and a drop in male libido.
Long-term complications of Turp include the need to reoperate, a bladder neck contracture that needs resection across the urethra, or formation of strictures in the urethra that requires surgery. The risk for urinary tract infection after Turp, according to a 2004 study, is 15.5 percent. In one study, 67 percent of men who underwent Turp suffered sexual dysfunction or a decrease thereof.
Bradley Hennenfent of the Prostatitis Foundation in Smithshire, Illinois, headed the study conducted at the Manila Genitourinary Clinic both in its Cebu and Manila branches.
A less invasive and less dangerous technique has been confirmed in the study though.
And it avoids surgery for a much longer time. But that would be for our next article on the matter.
Meanwhile, keep this in mind. “It was always best to fight in a place where your opponent couldn’t drive you into a corner,” Jude Watson wrote in his short novel Jedi Apprentice: The Dark Rival (1999).
Dealing with age and infection are much the same; both can drive you into a corner.
The only logical solution is to avoid either.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 22, 2012.