Benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH)

Benign prostate hyperplasia or BPH is a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate gland. It's a common condition, affecting around a third of men over the age of 50 in the UK. Benign prostate enlargement causes problems passing urine. It can disturb sleep, lead to incontinence, and decrease quality of life.

The London Clinic provides specialist treatment for benign prostate enlargement. The world-leading urologists offer expert assessment and bespoke treatment to resolve symptoms and restore wellbeing.

What is benign prostate hyperplasia?

Benign prostate hyperplasia is the medical term for non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate. The prostate is a small, walnut-sized gland located between the bladder and penis in men. The prostate can get bigger with increasing age, and the older you get, the more likely you are to have an enlarged prostate.

Hyperplasia means that the number of cells increases, making the prostate grow bigger. As the gland expands, it can squeeze the urethra, restricting the flow of urine and causing problems passing water.

As many as a third of men over the age of 50 have urinary symptoms, and the most common cause of problems is BPH. Some experts say that it is abnormal not to have benign growth of the prostate with increasing age.

However, that doesn't mean it's something you have to tolerate. If the flow of urine is reduced, it can cause unpleasant symptoms and can increase the risk of urinary tract infections.

If benign prostatic enlargement is affecting your health and well-being, the specialists at The London Clinic can provide expert treatment.

Investigation of benign prostate enlargement

The urologist will take a careful medical history. They will examine you to check for an enlarged bladder and perform a digital rectal examination to assess your prostate. They will then arrange investigations to find out more about your condition. These could include:

  • Urinary chart: The consultant may ask you to record how much you drink, the volume of urine you pass, and how often you go to the toilet.
  • IPSS questionnaire: The International Prostate Symptom Score is a questionnaire that helps your urologist understand your symptoms and their effect on your life.
  • Blood tests to check your blood counts and evaluate kidney function.
  • PSA blood test to check for Prostate Specific Antigen, a chemical that can increase if you have prostate cancer.
  • Flow test and post-void residual ultrasound: Test to evaluate how strong your flow is and if the bladder is emptying properly.
  • MRI Prostate: An magnetic scan to look at the size and shape of the prostate, examine for cancer, and help the consultant to decide if a prostate biopsy is required.

Signs and symptoms of benign prostate hyperplasia

Benign prostatic enlargement causes problems with passing urine. Common signs and symptoms include:

  • Problems starting the flow of urine.
  • Needing to pass urine more frequently.
  • A weak urine stream.
  • The sensation that the bladder isn't emptying properly.
  • Dribbling after passing urine.
  • Getting up at night to go to the toilet.
  • Urgency when you need to pass urine.
  • Incontinence and leaking of urine.
  • Recurrent urine infections.

If you are having difficulties passing urine, or you are concerned about your prostate, see your GP or make an appointment with the expert urologists at The London Clinic.

Treatment of benign prostate hyperplasia

The urology specialists use medication and advanced surgical techniques to treat BPH. The London Clinic also offers many innovative new treatments to relieve symptoms, improve urine flow, and restore your quality of life.

Your urology consultant will consider your symptoms, the effect they are having on your life, and the results of your investigations before tailoring a bespoke treatment plan. This could include:


For many men, an operation is not essential immediately. Medications can treat the symptoms of prostate enlargement, particularly in the early stages to gradually shrink the prostate and improve the flow. However, they rarely provide a permanent solution. TURP surgery

Transurethral resection of the prostate is a long established operation to remove prostate tissue. Under spinal or general anaesthetic, your surgeon will place a small telescope into your penis and remove excess tissue to improve urine flow and bladder emptying. More details about TURP surgery

Aquablation therapy

An innovative, minimally-invasive surgical treatment which treats urinary symptoms, with a reduced risk of side-effects. The surgeon removes prostate tissue using a heat-free waterjet. The therapy is safe and effective, with a significant reduction in sexual problems after the procedure. More details about aquablation therapy.


A minimally invasive procedure to treat men with BPH. The urologist inserts an implant that rapidly improves urine flow without the loss of ejaculatory or erectile function. Urolift is proven to significantly improve the quality of life for those with prostate enlargement. More details about Urolift

Prostate artery embolisation

The London Clinic is one of the first independent hospitals in the UK to offer prostate artery embolisation. The procedure involves blocking the arteries that supply blood to the prostate, causing it to shrink. It is a safe and effective alternative to surgery. More details about prostate artery embolisation.


iTind is a revolutionary approach to the treatment of prostate enlargement. It is a temporary implant that the urologists insert in a quick, minimally-invasive procedure. The device presses on the urethra and improves the flow of urine. More details about iTind


A new and minimally invasive procedure using steam (heated energy) to destroy the enlarged prostate causing eventual shrinkage to the prostate. This system is very effective, safe and clinically proven to improve urinary symptoms while maintaining sexual function. More details about Rezum


Procept is a form of waterjet robotic surgery. The London Clinic is a pioneer in the use of robotic surgery. The role of the Urology Service at The London Clinic

In accordance with NICE, the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence, the Urology consultants work with highly-trained multidisciplinary teams to discuss and plan your treatment.

The specialist Urology team, together with state-of-the-art facilities and innovative treatments, ensures patients receive exceptional Urology care at The London Clinic.


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