Water Vapor Therapy Study | News | Loyola Medicine
Thursday, June 10, 2021

Five-year Study Supports Safety, Efficacy of Water Vapor Therapy

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MAYWOOD, IL – A minimally invasive water vapor thermal therapy provides significant and durable symptom relief, and improved urine flow, for at least five years in men suffering from lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) due to benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), according to the results of a new five-year study.

“Rezūm™ Water Vapor Therapy is a non-invasive procedure providing sustainable relief from common urinary tract symptoms affecting most older men,” said lead study author Kevin McVary, MD, a Loyola Medicine urologist, Director of the Men’s Health Center in Burr Ridge and Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine professor.

By age 50, more than 50% of men (and more than 90% by age 85) suffer from BPH, which causes a variety of uncomfortable and disruptive symptoms, including: nighttime waking to urinate (nocturia); an increased frequency and urgency to urinate; the feeling that the bladder has not quite emptied following urination; and a weak urine stream.

Water vapor therapy involves the insertion of a scope into the urethra (administered with local anesthesia). A drop of water is then converted to steam and delivered through the scope to the prostate tissues, killing any unnecessary tissue. As the in-office procedure is confined only to the constructive tissue.

The multi-center randomized trial of the Rezūm System included 197 patients, older than age 50, with a prostate volume of 30 to 80 cc. The patients had an International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS) of at least 13, and a maximum flow rate (Qmax) of less than 15 ml/s, and were randomized and studies over five years.

“Significant improvement of LUTS” was observed at three months post therapy and remained durable for five years in the treatment group, according to the findings. Specifically, the average IPSS score was reduced by 48%, quality of life scores increased 45%, and Qmax improved 44%. Overall, BPH symptoms 48%. Surgical retreatment rate was very low at 4.4% with no reports of device or procedure related sexual dysfunction or sustained de novo erectile dysfunction.

“This long-term study confirms the safety and efficacy of non-invasive water vapor therapy for this extremely common condition in men,” said Dr. McVary, who is also the executive director of the Loyola Medicine Men’s Health Center. “This therapy is safe, minimally invasive, and highly effective in diminishing LUTS symptoms, without the side effects of medication.”

The study, “Final 5-Year Outcomes of the Multicenter Randomized Sham-Controlled Trial of Rezūm Water Vapor Thermal Therapy for Treatment of Moderate-to-Severe Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms Secondary to Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia,” appeared online in The Journal of Urology.

About Loyola Medicine and Trinity Health

Loyola Medicine, a member of Trinity Health, is a quaternary care system based in the western suburbs of Chicago that includes Loyola University Medical Center (LUMC), Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, MacNeal Hospital and convenient locations offering primary and specialty care services from 1,877 physicians throughout Cook, Will and DuPage counties. LUMC is a 547-licensed-bed hospital in Maywood that includes the William G. and Mary A. Ryan Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine, the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, a Level 1 trauma center, Illinois's largest burn center, a certified comprehensive stroke center and a children’s hospital. Having delivered compassionate care for over 50 years, Loyola also trains the next generation of caregivers through its teaching affiliation with Loyola University Chicago’s Stritch School of Medicine and Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing. Gottlieb is a 247-licensed-bed community hospital in Melrose Park with 150 physician offices, an adult day care program, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, the Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park. MacNeal Hospital is a 374-bed teaching hospital in Berwyn with advanced inpatient and outpatient medical, surgical and psychiatric services, advanced diagnostics and treatments. MacNeal has a 12-bed acute rehabilitation unit, a 25-bed inpatient skilled nursing facility, and a 68-bed behavioral health program and community clinics. MacNeal has provided quality, patient-centered care to the near west suburbs since 1919.

Trinity Health is one of the largest multi-institutional Catholic healthcare systems in the nation, serving diverse communities that include more than 30 million people across 22 states. Trinity Health includes 94 hospitals, as well as 109 continuing care locations that include PACE programs, senior living facilities and home care and hospice services. Its continuing care programs provide nearly 2.5 million visits annually. Based in Livonia, Mich., and with annual operating revenues of $18.3 billion and assets of $26.2 billion, the organization returns $1.1 billion to its communities annually in the form of charity care and other community benefit programs. Trinity employs about 133,000 colleagues, including 7,800 employed physicians and clinicians. Committed to those who are poor and underserved in its communities, Trinity is known for its focus on the country's aging population. As a single, unified ministry, the organization is the innovator of Senior Emergency Departments, the largest not-for-profit provider of home health care services—ranked by number of visits—in the nation, as well as the nation’s leading provider of PACE (Program of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly) based on the number of available programs.