EVU call icon
EVU e-mail icon
EVU location icon

6116 East Arbor Avenue, Building 2, Suite 108, Mesa, AZ 85206

Prostatic Artery Embolization (PAE)

Prostatic Artery Embolization (PAE) is a cutting-edge procedure performed to help improve urinary symptoms caused by an enlarged prostate without the risk of sexual side effects.  It is a minimally invasive treatment.

Prostatic artery embolization is performed through a small puncture in the groin. A catheter is inserted through the artery and directed toward the prostate. Once the catheter is positioned in the artery supplying blood to the prostate, tiny particles are injected that plug up the artery, blocking blood flow. This is called embolization. The process is then repeated on the other side, most commonly through the same original puncture. The procedure can take anywhere from 1-4 hours, depending on the location and size of the prostatic arteries.

The PAE procedure blocks the blood flow to the areas of the prostate that are most affected by benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), resulting in death, or necrosis, of isolated areas. Because it is impossible to block all of the blood flow to the prostate, it does not die completely. These areas of necrosis cause the prostate to initially be softer, alleviating some of the pressure that is causing blockage of the urine. Over several months, the body’s immune system reabsorbs the dead tissue and replaces it with a scar. This scar tissue slowly contracts to result in shrinkage of the prostate. Over a six-month period, the prostate will shrink by 20-40%, resulting in improved and less frequent urination.

Prostatic artery embolization is performed through a small puncture in the groin. A catheter is inserted through the artery and directed toward the prostate. Once the catheter is positioned in the artery supplying blood to the prostate, tiny particles are injected that plug up the artery, blocking blood flow. This is called embolization. The process is then repeated on the other side, most commonly through the same original puncture. The procedure can take anywhere from 1-4 hours, depending on the location and size of the prostatic arteries.

Potential Side Effects

Because PAE is a non-surgical treatment, possible side effects are limited, but can include:

  • Urinary tract infection: Infections are seen in less than one percent of patients. Antibiotics are given during the procedure, and a short course should be taken afterward to help avoid this possibility.
  • Increased urinary frequency, urgency, and burning with urination: These side effects can last for up to a week after the procedure.
Translate »