It was a visit to hospital for treatment to an eye condition that convinced 67-year-old Birmingham businessman Robin Whitehouse he had a problem in a totally different part of his body.
After the hospital visit Robin, a founder and now senior manager of international company Heads And All Threads, with its British headquarters in Birmingham’s Woodgate Business Park, was asked to give a urine sample as part of a routine set of tests before he was allowed home. But, in his own words, he “just couldn’t come up with the goods!”
He was suffering from an enlarged prostate that was blocking his bladder and preventing him passing urine properly.
It was something that had affected him for almost 12 years but, like the vast majority of men over 50 who suffer from similar symptoms, Robin chose to ignore it.
Now after an operation using cutting-edge technology Robin, who lives with wife Chris in Streetley, is urging other men in a similar situation to “get yourselves checked out.”
“I knew that something was wrong,” he explained. “But, like many men of my age, I just ignored the symptoms.
“Once I had been diagnosed and operated on I was out and about the following day wondering what all the fuss was about – I should have had it done years ago.”
The operation was carried out at BMI Priory by Consultant Urologist Mr Zaki Almallah who performed Green Light Laser surgery on Robin, who was covered by private medical insurance.
An alternative to the usual way or treating such problems, the Green Light Laser is minimally invasive and means patients can usually go home after a one night stay in hospital or, in some cases, the very same day. Mr Almallah explained: “The green colour of the laser is rapidly absorbed by the red pigment found in blood and the rapid absorption of this green light causes the prostate tissue to vaporise and so it is possible to remove obstructing tissue to allow easier passage of urine.
“A majority of men over the age of 50 will suffer enlarged prostate at some time. Unfortunately the hard part is not treating the problem but simply getting men to recognise the symptoms and get them checked out.”
One major worry for many men is that prostate operations could have a diverse effect on their sex lives but Robin says they have no need to worry on that score.
“It was obviously something I had at the back of my mind when I had the operation but I’m happy to report that there were no adverse side effects whatsoever,” said Robin.W
To read this article on West Midlands Business News click here.