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What can patients expect following a prostate removal?

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Quick Answer

After prostate removal surgery, patients can expect a hospital stay of up to three days, along with the insertion of two catheters, one in the urethra and one through the skin, explains WebMD. These may need to remain in place for a few days after the patient returns home.

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Full Answer

Patients usually require pain medications after surgery, and many experience incontinence and erectile dysfunction for weeks or months after surgery, WebMD says. About 5 percent of men younger than 50 and 15 percent of men older than 70 regain full bladder control after prostate removal surgery. Permanent erectile dysfunction is relatively common after prostate removal surgery, with the risk of this condition increasing in older patients. The nerves that run to the penis go through the prostate, so removing it without damaging the nerves can be difficult. If penile rehabilitation does not restore function, various medications or penile implants can usually help.

Prostate removal surgery is generally performed in an attempt to cure prostate cancer, states WebMD. It is only effective as a full cure, however, if the cancer has not spread to other areas of the body. Once doctors remove the prostate, they examine it using microscopes to see if it has reached the edge of the prostate. If it has, it has likely spread, and needs further treatment.

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