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Transurethral Incision of the Prostate (TUIP)

 What is transurethral incision of the prostate (TUIP)?
 When is it used?
 How do I prepare for this procedure?
 What happens during the procedure?
 What happens after the procedure?
 What are the risks of this procedure?

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What is transurethral incision of the prostate (TUIP)?

Transurethral incision of the prostate (TUIP) is a simple surgical procedure that can relieve the symptoms of an enlarged prostate gland.

The prostate gland is part of a man's reproductive system. It is about the size of a walnut and located between the bladder and the penis. The prostate gland surrounds the upper part of the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder out through the penis. It makes fluid that nourishes sperm and helps carry it out of the body during sex.

To relieve the symptoms caused by the enlarged prostate, your healthcare provider makes cuts in the prostate gland. This relieves the pressure the enlarged prostate puts on the urethra. Often bladder symptoms are better within 2 to 3 weeks after the surgery. You may not feel the need to urinate as often and you may have few or no urination “emergencies.”

When is it used?

When the prostate gland is enlarged it is called benign prostate hyperplasia, or BPH. When the prostate gets bigger than normal, it may put pressure on the urethra and cause problems with urination. You may have trouble passing urine, and you may feel the need to urinate more often, sometimes even at night. The need to urinate can come on suddenly, which can make travel, work, and some social situations difficult or awkward. In severe cases BPH can completely block your ability to pass urine. This can cause kidney damage if it is not treated promptly.

TUIP is a possible treatment if your prostate gland is not severely enlarged. Instead of this procedure, other treatments may include:

You may choose not to have treatment. Ask your healthcare provider about your choices for treatment and the risks.

How do I prepare for this procedure?

What happens during the procedure?

This procedure is usually done at a surgical center.

You will be given general or regional anesthesia to keep you from feeling pain during the procedure. General anesthesia relaxes your muscles and you will be asleep. Regional anesthesia numbs part of your body while you stay awake. You may also be given medicine to help you relax.

Once you are numb, your healthcare provider will pass a thin, lighted tube through the urethra and into the bladder. With this scope your provider will be able to see the area where the enlarged prostate is causing problems. Fluid will be passed into the bladder to stretch the bladder and help your provider see the area better.

Your provider will make 2 deep cuts in the prostate gland to relieve the pressure on the urethra. Then, while you are still numb, your provider will insert a catheter into the penis and the urethra and then into the bladder. The catheter will help the bladder drain and flush out any blood clots that may have formed. The urethra will swell after the surgery and the catheter will help it stay open.

What happens after the procedure?

After the procedure you may stay in a recovery area for at least a few hours. You may be able to leave the hospital or surgical center the day you have the procedure or you may stay in the hospital overnight.

You will likely have some pain or discomfort in the area over the bladder, as well as at the base of the penis. The catheter in the urethra can be irritating. It normally needs to stay in for 2 to 3 days. Do not try to remove the catheter. Your healthcare provider will remove the catheter.

The improvement in symptoms tends to last a long time, but sometimes the symptoms come back and you may need to have the procedure again after several years.

Ask your healthcare provider:

Make sure you know when you should come back for a checkup.

What are the risks of this procedure?

The risks of complications from this procedure are low. Your healthcare provider will explain the procedure and any risks. Some possible risks include:

Every procedure or treatment has risks. Ask your healthcare provider how these risks apply to you. Be sure to discuss any other questions or concerns that you may have.

healthinformatics info


Lourenco T, et al. The clinical effectiveness of transurethral incision of the prostate: a systematic review of randomised controlled trials. World J Urol. 2010 Feb;28(1):23-32.

Mokos I, et al. Transurethral incision/resection of the prostate (TUIP/TURP) in operative treatment of repeated bladder outlet obstruction early after kidney transplantation. Acta Clin Croat. 2011 Sep;50(3):381-4.

Noerby B, Nielsen HV, and Frimodt-Moeller PC. Transurethral interstitial laser coagulation of the prostate and transurethral microwave thermotherapy vs transurethral resection or incision of the prostate: results of a randomized, controlled study in patients with symptomatic benign prostatic hyperplasia. BJU Int. 2002 Dec;90(9):853-62.

Reich O, Gratzke C, Stief CG. Techniques and long-term results of surgical procedures for BPH. Eur Urol. 2006 Jun;49(6):970-8.

Yang Q, et al. Transurethral resection or incision of the prostate and other therapies: a survey of treatments for benign: prostatic obstruction in the UK. BJU Int. 1999 Oct;84(6):640-5.

Related Topics

Transurethral Incision of the Prostate (TUIP)

Enlarged Prostate (Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia)

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Last Modified: 2013-11-18

Last Reviewed: 2012-11-21

Website Updated: October 2014

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This content is reviewed periodically and is subject to change as new health information becomes available. The information is intended to inform and educate and is not a replacement for medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis or treatment by a healthcare professional.

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