Prostate Artery Embolization

Approximately half of men aged 51-60 are affected by Benign Prostate Hypertrophy (BPH) or benign prostate enlargement.

Typical Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms (LUTS) of BPH include:



Fortunately, many of the symptoms associated with BPH can be treated with oral medications. However, for a certain percentage of men, these medications are ineffective. These individuals are typically offered a variety of surgical procedures, including transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP).

Prostate Artery Embolization
Prostate artery embolization (PAE) is a cutting-edge, minimally invasive procedure that can be used as an alternative to the standard surgical techniques in appropriate patients. The goal of PAE is to shrink the prostate and significantly improve the LUTS associated with BPH. This is accomplished by a small puncture in either the left wrist or groin, followed by the insertion of a microcatheter (small tube) to the level of the prostate artery, which significantly decreases the blood flow to the prostate. As the blood flow decreases, so does the size and growth potential of the gland.



PAE is performed by an Interventional Radiologist (IR), as an outpatient procedure. The patient is put under conscious sedation and is able to leave 2-4 hours after the procedure. PAE has been thoroughly studied in Europe and South America, and it is gaining popularity in the United States. The team at Northwest Radiology is proud to lead the way in offering this exciting new treatment.

Prostate artery embolization (PAE) is a minimally invasive procedure that involves blocking the blood flow to the prostate gland in order to reduce its size. It is considered to be as good as transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP), the current standard of care for treating symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), because it has been shown to be similarly effective in reducing symptoms and improving quality of life in multiple studies.

A 2019 systematic review and meta-analysis of 10 studies involving 769 patients found that PAE and TURP were similarly effective in reducing symptoms and improving quality of life, with no significant difference in terms of adverse events. Another study published in 2020 in the Journal of Endourology found that PAE was non-inferior to TURP in terms of symptom relief and improvement in quality of life.


  • Al-Otaibi, M., & Al-Qahtani, M. (2019). Prostate artery embolization for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia: systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of vascular and interventional radiology : JVIR, 30(9), 1315-1323.
  • Gao, H., Wang, J., Liu, Q., Fang, Y., & Chen, Y. (2020). Noninferiority of Prostate Artery Embolization Compared to Transurethral Resection of the Prostate in Symptomatic Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Journal of endourology, 34(8), 795-801.

Who Is A Candidate?

  • Men suffering with LUTS from BPH who are not responding to or experiencing side effects from the standard medications used to treat BPH
  • Men who wish to avoid surgical procedures for BPH such as a TURP or prostatectomy
  • Men with very large prostate glands who may be poor candidates for TURP
  • Men who may have other medical conditions limiting their ability to undergo general anesthesia for a surgical procedure