Prostatectomy

A prostatectomy is a surgery to remove the prostate gland. The prostate gland is part of the male reproductive system. It makes and stores the milky fluid that forms part of semen. The gland sits below the bladder and in front of the rectum. The tube that urine flows out through also runs through the prostate. The procedure may be:

  • Call Your Doctor

    After you leave the hospital, call your doctor if any of the following occur:

    • Signs of infection, including fever and chills
    • Redness, swelling, increasing pain, excessive bleeding, or any discharge from the incision site
    • Nausea and/or vomiting that you cannot control with the medications you were given after surgery, or which persist for more than two days after discharge from the hospital
    • Pain that you cannot control with the medicines you have been given
    • Pain, burning, urgency or frequency of urination, or persistent blood in the urine
    • Poor drainage from Foley catheter
    • Abdominal swelling or pain
    • Cough
      , shortness of breath, or chest pain,
    • Headaches, muscle aches, dizziness, or general ill feeling
    • Constipation
    • New, unexplained symptoms
    • Drainage from your incision

    In case of an emergency, call for medical help right away.

  • Definition

    A prostatectomy is a surgery to remove the prostate gland. The prostate gland is part of the male reproductive system.
    It makes and stores the milky fluid that forms part of semen. The gland sits below the bladder and in front of the rectum. The tube that urine flows out through also runs through the prostate.

    The procedure may be:

    • Simple prostatectomy—removal of part of prostate
    • Radical
      prostatectomy—removal of entire prostate and some surrounding tissue
    Anatomy of the Prostate
    Anatomy of the Prostate Gland
    Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

  • What to Expect

    The usual length of stay is 2-3 days. Your doctor may choose to keep you longer if complications arise.

  • Reasons for Procedure


    A simple prostatectomy may be done to remove an enlarged prostate that is non-cancerous. A common cause of this type of growth is called
    benign prostatic hyperplasia
    (BPH). It can interfere with the flow of urine out of the body. The surgery is done to allow urine to flow through again.


    A radical prostatectomy may be done to remove a prostate gland containing
    cancer
    .

  • Possible Complications

    If you are planning to have a prostatectomy, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:

    • Bleeding
    • Infection

    • Inability to control urinary stream (
      incontinence
      )

    • Inability to get an erection (
      impotence
      ) and other sexual difficulties
    • Blood clots in the legs or lungs
    • Sterility
    • Injury to the rectum or other nearby structures

    Factors that may increase the risk of complications include:

    • Obesity
    • Chronic or recent illness
    • Lung, kidney, liver, or heart disease
    • Smoking
    • Alcohol abuse
      or
      drug use
    • Use of certain prescription medicines
    • Diabetes
    • Additional surgery to repair a hernia of the groin