Can Botox Help with BPH?
Botox (botulinum toxin type A) is a poisonous substance extracted from the spores of Clostridium botulinum. Although best known as a treatment to temporarily eliminate wrinkles, it may have a role in treating BPH. Currently use of Botox for BPH is still in the experimental stage, but study results have been promising.
Botox prevents the release of a chemical transmitter called acetylcholine, which triggers contractions. In men who have BPH, Botox injections into the prostate, which are given under ultrasound guidance, appear to weaken certain muscles or block certain nerves. These actions then improve urine flow and reduce the amount of urine that remains in the bladder. Study results thus far show that many men were able to stop taking all their BPH medications within eight days of receiving a Botox injection, and they also experienced up to a 50 percent decline in their International Prostate Symptom Scores. (Johns Hopkins)
In a recent study published in Urology, 77 men with BPH were given Botox. At their two-month evaluation, 55 men had symptom relief, including a significant increase in urinary flow rate. In addition, there was a 51.6 percent reduction in serum PSA levels, 42.8 percent decline in prostate volume, and a 55.9 percent reduction in residual urine volume. (Brisinda) Thus far no side effects have been reported. At this time, Botox does not have approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treatment of BPH, but it can be administered under special circumstances in approved studies.
Brisinda G et al. Relief by botulinum toxin of lower urinary tract symptoms owing to benign prostatic hyperplasia: early and long-term results. Urology 2009 Jan; 73(1): 90-94
Johns Hopkins Medicine. The Best Treatment Strategies for BPH.