Photovaporization of the Prostate (PVP) 

Photovaporization of the prostate (PVP) is a minimally invasive surgical option for men who are suffering the effects of an enlarged prostate.     

More than half of men will start to experience the symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), also known as an enlarged prostate, between ages 50 and 60. The causes of this condition aren’t entirely known, though it may be related to changes in hormonal balance.  

Because an enlarged prostate can restrict the flow of urine through the urethra, this condition can cause aggravating issues such as: 

  • A frequent need to urinate 
  • Increased urination at night 
  • A weak urine stream 
  • Inability to empty the bladder 
  • Difficulty starting urination 

Photovaporization of the prostate (PVP) is a surgical treatment that relieves the pressure of an enlarged prostate on the urethra.  

What Are the Benefits of Photovaporization of the Prostate? 

PVP offers several benefits over other surgical treatments, including transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP).  

Some notable differences include: 

  • Immediate symptom relief 
  • Dramatic improvement in urine flow 
  • Little to no bleeding 
  • A return to normal activities in two to three days 

Additionally, patients who undergo a photovaporization procedure will usually be free of the catheter within 24 hours. Patients who undergo a TURP usually remain catheterized for up to three days.  

Procedure Details  

In this procedure, the doctor inserts a cystoscope into the urethra and uses a laser to precisely remove enlarged prostate tissue. This creates a wider channel for urine to flow from the bladder.  


Laser PVP surgery is a highly effective option for treating BPH that can produce immediate results. However, there are potential risks, such as: 

A temporary increase in the urge to urinate 

A small amount of blood in the urine for several days after the procedure 

Retrograde ejaculation 

Decreased sexual function 

Photovaporization of the prostate is one of several treatment options Tampa General Hospital offers for men suffering from BPH.