It is challenging to come to terms with a positive prostate cancer diagnosis, and most patients lose all hope the moment they receive the news. For most men, the best recourse is prostatectomy or prostate surgery. It is a procedure where a surgeon removes the entire prostate gland to prevent the spread of cancerous cells to other body organs. Naturally, most patients worry because they lack enough information about the whole process. This article highlights some of the most common questions patients ask before a prostatectomy procedure.
What Type of Surgery Is Best?
When patients think about prostate cancer surgery, the first thing that pops to mind is an open procedure. However, doctors can use other techniques to remove a cancerous prostate, such as robotic prostatectomy. Although open surgery and robotic prostatectomy achieve the same objective, doctors prefer the latter since it is precise. Additionally, robotic prostate surgery leaves less scarring since a surgeon only needs to make tiny incisions. That said, recommending a particular type of prostatectomy is never a haphazard decision. Doctors must analyse a patient's case and consider various factors before proposing the best possible procedure.
Are There Sex-Related Side Effects?
The prostate gland's location in relation to the nerves that activate an erection is often a cause for worry for most prostate cancer surgery candidates. Understandably, patients worry about their sex life after surgery. However, with doctors using modern surgery techniques, you should not worry too much about the procedure's potential impact on your sex life. The reason is that surgeons today rely on robotic prostate surgery, a high precision procedure. It means that robotic prostate surgery can spare all nerve bundles responsible for an erection. However, you should remember that the degree of sexual function post-prostatectomy depends on age and how sexually active you were before the procedure. Overall, you might experience temporary erectile issues post-surgery, but everything should return to normal after a few weeks.
Does Surgery Cause Urinary Incontinence?
Urinary incontinence is another major worry for patients about to undergo prostatectomy. Urinary incontinence refers to a condition where a patient is unable to control their bladder. It causes a lot of stress because being incontinent can affect you physically, emotionally and socially. Although doctors agree that urinary incontinence is a possibility post-surgery, the chances of occurrence depend on a patient's age. For instance, older patients are more likely to experience urinary incontinence post-prostatectomy than younger patients. Even then, treating or managing urinary incontinence post-surgery is possible today, thanks to advancements in medical technology.
Contact a prostate cancer surgery service for more information.