Focal Laser Ablation at the Prostate Laser Center in Houston, TX

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After a diagnosis of severe BPH and aggressive Gleason 8 prostate cancer, my wife found Dr. Karamanian and the Prostate Laser Center online. A phone interview, an office visit, and another MRI (expertly read by Dr. K) convinced us to deny my urologist's recommendation for a radical prostatectomy and use Dr. K's laser treatment. The laser ablation went well. Recovery was uncomfortable because of the amount of tissue that had to be ablated, but only lasted about 3 months, at which time my PSA went from 6.4 to 1.6, with all BPH symptoms gone. Now at 6 months post ablation, my PSA is 2.0, no cancer detected via MRI follow-up, and all other functions are normal. Dr. Karamanian and his staff are superb. Professional, caring, accessible, and responsive to your needs. I would recommend Dr. K to any man experiencing BPH or prostate cancer.

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  • Posted

    Good job! Can you share the cost of th treatment and what was covered by insurance if any?

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  • Posted

    Great news, thanks for sharing.

    Yes, Dr. K is all of what you shared.

    Can you provide more information? You said you were treated for both cancer and BPH? What was the size of your prostate before FLA? In your follow-up MRI that showed no cancerous lesions, what was the volume of your prostate then? How are your lower urinary tract symptoms since FLA and your recovery - specifically, number of times you get up at night, void rate and post void residual (if you ever had it measured)?

    Does insurance cover FLA for cancer? We know it does not for BPH.

    Wish you continued health. Great story!

    Michael

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    • Posted

      Had one gleason 8 and two 7s, combined with a lobe growing into the bottom of the bladder. Dr. K ablated a lot of tissue, hence the recovery was passing a lot of dead tissue, old blood, etc. Pre-ablation the prostate was 67, it is now 25. All urinary issues are gone. I get up maybe once at night. Strong flow, no residuals.

      Unfortunately FLA is not covered by insurance.

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    • Posted

      baron,

      So you had multiple lesions with highest being Gleason 8 and Dr K was able to ablate all the lesions and address the median lobe? That is a great success story.

      A good friend just had an MRI and was given PIRADS 5, so he is going to schedule an MRI-fusion biopsy. I did suggest he explore FLA once the biopsy results are in.

      From all I've gleaned on this forum and on Inspire, Dr K takes on challenging cases and is quite successful.

      I've had multiple negative mpMRIs and a negative 16-core biopsy but have a prostate that's very large w/ median lobe. I know Dr K can help me. I'm going to hound my insurance company, and will continue to try to find a way to self-finance FLA.

      My insurance makes PAE affordable but if $ were not a deciding factor, FLA would be my choice and Dr K would be the guy to do it. Why insurers will cover PAE or TURP or HOLEP and not FLA is frustrating as it takes off the table for a lot of us one of the best ways to treat BPH and cancer (although I have read in some places that FLA for cancer is covered but the FDA has not approved it to treat BPH).

      Thanks

      Michael

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  • Posted

    Congratulations. Sounds like you are a lucky man. Your wife found the best in the business in my opinion. I had an FLA done for BPH almost 2 and a 1/2 years ago. It is not often you find a doctor who's main interest is really helping people. He is amazing and so is Mr. Sartin his nurse.

    Three weeks ago my neighbor went to see his urologist and his PSA had moved from 4 to 6 in three month so the urologist wanted to do the typical blind biopsy the next week and scheduled it for the next Tuesday. I stopped my neighbor and told him that an 3T MRI was the best way to go and told him why. I gave him Doctor K's number and he called him and Dr. K told him to go and get a 3T MRI locally and then send it to him over Dr. K's web portal. My neighbor decided he would instead drive to Houston and have Dr. K get him scheduled for an MRI at an imaging center there. Dr. K could then read it for him in person. His MRI was at 8:30 in the morning and then he drove to Dr. K's office and Dr. K already had reviewed the MRI and told him he was clearing his schedule to meet with him and his wife at 10:00 am that morning. Dr. K felt it was that important. Doctor K spent 2 hours with them and showed them the bad news. My friend does have a serious cancer Lesion that is moving close to penetrating the prostate capsule. This is very serious. Dr. K told him he could not help him with FLA but he would assist him as he moved forward with the special treatment options that are needed. Dr. K charged him nothing, zero, for all this. He told him what all his options were. My neighbor will now get a focal laser biopsy here locally from a recommendation of Dr. K Then my friend will decide on full surgery or radiation and where to have the procedure done. Mayo, Mount Sinai, Cedars-Sinai, he does not care where he only wants the best. This is life and death.

    Dr. K is the kind of man that cares more about the person and setting them on the best course than taking there money and he will help him. When I had my FLA it cost me $20,000 out of pocket but it was the best money I have ever spent. My FLA was for BPH only I did not and do not have cancer. I am sure Dr. K has gotten very good at prostate FLA since 2016 as he has done many of these for BPH and even more FLA procedures for cancer removals. I currently know many of his patients. We are all in agreement about him.

    Again you are lucky to have your wife and to be blessed that she found Dr. Karamanian for you.

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  • Posted

    Congratulations. Sounds like you are a lucky man. Your wife found the best in the business in my opinion. I had an FLA done for BPH almost 2 and a 1/2 years ago. It is not often you find a doctor who's main interest is really helping people. He is amazing and so is Mr. Sartin his nurse.

    Three weeks ago my neighbor went to see his urologist and his PSA had moved from 4 to 6 in three month so the urologist wanted to do the typical blind biopsy the next week and scheduled it for the next Tuesday. I stopped my neighbor and told him that an 3T MRI was the best way to go and told him why. I gave him Doctor K's number and he called him and Dr. K told him to go and get a 3T MRI locally and then send it to him over Dr. K's web portal. My neighbor decided he would instead drive to Houston and have Dr. K get him scheduled for an MRI at an imaging center there. Dr. K could then read it for him in person. His MRI was at 8:30 in the morning and then he drove to Dr. K's office and Dr. K already had reviewed the MRI and told him he was clearing his schedule to meet with him and his wife at 10:00 am that morning. Dr. K felt it was that important. Doctor K spent 2 hours with them and showed them the bad news. My friend does have a serious cancer Lesion that is moving close to penetrating the prostate capsule. This is very serious. Dr. K told him he could not help him with FLA but he would assist him as he moved forward with the special treatment options that are needed. Dr. K charged him nothing, zero, for all this. He told him what all his options were. My neighbor will now get a focal laser biopsy here locally from a recommendation of Dr. K Then my friend will decide on full surgery or radiation and where to have the procedure done. Mayo, Mount Sinai, Cedars-Sinai, he does not care where he only wants the best. This is life and death.

    Dr. K is the kind of man that cares more about the person and setting them on the best course than taking there money and he will help him. When I had my FLA it cost me $20,000 out of pocket but it was the best money I have ever spent. My FLA was for BPH only I did not and do not have cancer. I am sure Dr. K has gotten very good at prostate FLA since 2016 as he has done many of these for BPH and even more FLA procedures for cancer removals. I currently know many of his patients. We are all in agreement about him.

    Again you are lucky to have your wife and to be blessed that she found Dr. Karamanian for you.

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  • Posted

    After your treatment did you have a PSMA Pet CT scan?

    This would show if there is cancer in the prostate and beyond.

    It is far more reliable post treatment than mri.

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  • Posted

    I met Dr K as well and he and his team are superb. Highly recommendable. At that time my insurance was to pay for the FLA procedure. Even though I finally opted for a different solution. Just want to say that some insurance does cover.

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  • Posted

    Congratulations Baron on your decision and outcome.

    Do you live in Houston or did you have to travel? If you had to travel how long did you have to stay in the hotel?

    Wishing you continued success!

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    • Posted

      Thank you for the kind wishes. I live just west of Fort Worth, but am in Houston frequently on business. For the FLA, we arrived Wednesday, had the procedure Thursday morning (took about 4.5 hours), and were able to drive home by mid-day on Friday.

      I did have a foley catheter for about a week. And then had to self catheter for a few weeks there after.

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    • Posted

      Your prostate was 67 cc prior to FLA and you had to wear a catheter for one week after and self-cath for 3 weeks additional?

      Was there that much swelling that you could not void?

      Not to diminish what you've been through but 67 cc is not particularly large at 3x normal size. Some of us have prostates 120 cc and larger.

      The ablated volume (42 cc) is on par with other guys who saw Dr K for FLA. The more tissue ablated, the more swelling to be expected.

      Thanks,

      Michael

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  • Posted

    Congrat Baron 😃

    It was the best decision in your life , similar as mine .

    I underwent Dr. K FLA in April 2018 - real changelifer .

    Best Wishes from Central Europe , Stan

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