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How To Recover From Prostate Cancer

What Happens After Radical Prostatectomy

How Long Does It Take To Recover From Prostate Cancer Surgery?

Patients are usually discharged within 24 hours of surgery after radical prostatectomy.

You may have a drain that gets rid of excess fluid from the surgery site. If a drain is placed at the time of surgery, it is typically removed before you leave the hospital.

A urinary catheter continues to drain your urine into a bag. You may need to leave the catheter in place at home for a few days to one week.

After a surgeon removes your prostate, youll no longer ejaculate semen. But you can still be sexually active.

What About My Physical And Emotional Wellness

Eating a healthy diet including a variety of foods, will ensure you have what your body needs to cope with treatment and recovery. Regular physical activity can improve your cancer recovery and reduce side effects such as fatigue.

  • Don’t be afraid to ask for professional and emotional support.
  • Consider joining a cancer support group.
  • Learn to ignore unwanted advice and “horror stories”.
  • Live day-to-day and remember that every day is likely to be different.

Complementary therapies can work alongside medical treatments and some have been shown to improve quality of life or reduce pain. There is no evidence that these therapies can cure or prevent cancer. Some have not been tested for side-effects, may work against other medical treatments and may be expensive. Talk to your doctor about using complementary therapies.

Your Cancer Care Team

People with cancer should be cared for by a multidisciplinary team . This is a team of specialists who work together to provide the best care and treatment.

The team often consists of specialist cancer surgeons, oncologists , radiologists, pathologists, radiographers and specialist nurses.

Other members may include physiotherapists, dietitians and occupational therapists. You may also have access to clinical psychology support.

When deciding what treatment is best for you, your doctors will consider:

  • the type and size of the cancer
  • what grade it is
  • whether the cancer has spread to other parts of your body

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Surgery To Remove Prostate Cancer

Surgery is one of the main treatments for prostate cancer. You usually have surgery to remove your prostate gland. This is a radical prostatectomy.

A radical prostatectomy is a major operation with some possible side effects. You may not need this type of surgery if you’re an older man with a slow growing prostate cancer. This is because your cancer might grow so slowly that you’re more likely to die of old age or other causes than from prostate cancer.

How Is Prostate Cancer Treated

An Insight On Prostate Cancer, Its Causes And Treatment Procedure

Lorenzo asked his doctors about survival and side effects and talked to friends and family members before deciding on treatment. He shares his story in this blog post.

Different types of treatment are available for prostate cancer. You and your doctor will decide which treatment is right for you. Some common treatments are

  • Expectant management. If your doctor thinks your prostate cancer is unlikely to grow quickly, he or she may recommend that you dont treat the cancer right away. Instead, you can choose to wait and see if you get symptoms in one of two ways:
  • Active surveillance. Closely monitoring the prostate cancer by performing prostate specific antigen tests and prostate biopsies regularly, and treating the cancer only if it grows or causes symptoms.
  • Watchful waiting. No tests are done. Your doctor treats any symptoms when they develop. This is usually recommended for men who are expected to live for 10 more years or less.
  • Surgery. A prostatectomy is an operation where doctors remove the prostate. Radical prostatectomy removes the prostate as well as the surrounding tissue.
  • Radiation therapy. Using high-energy rays to kill the cancer. There are two types of radiation therapy
  • External radiation therapy. A machine outside the body directs radiation at the cancer cells.
  • Internal radiation therapy . Radioactive seeds or pellets are surgically placed into or near the cancer to destroy the cancer cells.
  • Recommended Reading: Prostate Cancer Treatments Pros And Cons

    How Long Is The Hospital Stay For Prostate Removal

    After prostate removal, you will likely stay in the hospital for at least one day. You will return home with a urinary catheter which will remain in place for seven to 10 days after surgery. At a follow-up appointment, your catheter will be removed, and you can begin a gradual return to activities. During your recovery from prostate removal, you may experience some side effects.

    Cancer Treatments And Erectile Dysfunction

    Following surgery, many men experience erectile dysfunction , but for many, the disruption is temporary. Nerves damaged during surgery may result in erectile dysfunction. A nerve-sparing prostatectomy may reduce the chances of nerve damage. Another factor is the surgeons skill level for performing the nerve-sparing technique, which if done correctly, may improve patients likelihood of retaining erectile function, says Dr. Shelfo.

    Prostate cancer may also be treated with various types of radiation therapybrachytherapy, external beam radiation or stereotactic body radiation therapy. Each type of therapy causes somewhat different side effects. About half of all prostate cancer patients who undergo any of these types of radiation therapy are likely to develop erectile dysfunction, according to a 2016 article published in Advances in Radiation Oncology.

    When you compare surgery with radiation, both may affect erections, says Dr. Shelfo. Surgery is usually more immediate, and sexual dysfunction has the potential with time to improve. With radiation, erections are usually less affected in the beginning, but over timemonths or, sometimes, yearssexual dysfunction may develop. Both treatments may affect sexual function, resulting in no ejaculate or the ability to attain erections.

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    Top 4 Tips To Recover From A Prostate Cancer Surgery Successfully

    Surgery is the most common treatment for treating prostate cancer if it is safe from spreading outside the prostate gland.

    Radical prostatectomy is the main type of surgery that is done for treating prostate cancer. In this surgery, the entire prostate gland is removed and the tissues around it, and the seminal vesicles.

    After going through the surgery, the doctors will shift you into the recovery room. After you are safe, you might go back to the ward. However, you might still feel drowsy because of the anaesthesia and painkillers given to you during the surgery.

    The Grade Group And Psa Level Are Used To Stage Prostate Cancer

    Life After Prostate Cancer: Recovery is a Journey

    The stage of the cancer is based on the results of the staging and diagnostic tests, including the prostate-specific antigen test and the Grade Group. The tissue samples removed during the biopsy are used to find out the Gleason score. The Gleason score ranges from 2 to 10 and describes how different the cancer cells look from normal cells under a microscope and how likely it is that the tumor will spread. The lower the number, the more cancer cells look like normal cells and are likely to grow and spread slowly.

    The Grade Group depends on the Gleason score. See the General Information section for more information about the Gleason score.

    • Grade Group 1 is a Gleason score of 6 or less.
    • Grade Group 2 or 3 is a Gleason score of 7.
    • Grade Group 4 is a Gleason score 8.
    • Grade Group 5 is a Gleason score of 9 or 10.

    The PSA test measures the level of PSA in the blood. PSA is a substance made by the prostate that may be found in an increased amount in the blood of men who have prostate cancer.

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    What Happens During Radical Prostatectomy

    You will have general anesthesia during your prostate surgery. Your surgical team inserts a catheter to drain urine.

    After your surgeon removes your prostate, they check it under a microscope to see if cancer has extended beyond the edge of the prostate or into the seminal vesicles or lymph nodes. If it has, the cancer may have spread. In that case, you may need other treatment.

    Keeping Up With Appointments And Screenings

    Attending your doctors appointments after youve entered remission is very important. If you need to skip an appointment, you should make another appointment as soon as possible.

    Use these appointments as a time to discuss any concerns you may have with your doctor. Your doctor can also conduct tests to check for the cancers return during these appointments.

    Two tests to detect recurrent prostate cancer include a digital rectal exam and a PSA blood test. During a DRE, your doctor will insert a finger into your rectum. If your doctor detects something unusual, theyll likely ask for additional follow-up tests. These tests may include bone scans and imaging studies, such as an ultrasound or MRI.

    Men often experience side effects from their prostate cancer treatments. Some of these side effects may be immediate and temporary. Others may take several weeks or months to show up and never fully disappear.

    Common side effects from prostate cancer treatment include:

    Read Also: What Surgery Is Done For Enlarged Prostate

    What Types Of Hormone Therapy Are Used For Prostate Cancer

    Hormone therapy for prostate cancer can block the production or use of androgens . Currently available treatments can do so in several ways:

    • reducing androgen production by the testicles
    • blocking the action of androgens throughout the body
    • block androgen production throughout the body

    Treatments that reduce androgen production by the testicles are the most commonly used hormone therapies for prostate cancer and the first type of hormone therapy that most men with prostate cancer receive. This form of hormone therapy includes:

    Treatments that block the action of androgens in the body are typically used when ADT stops working. Such treatments include:

    Treatments that block the production of androgens throughout the body include:

    What Are The Side Effects Of Prostate Removal

    Dr Tim Nathan Urology

    All surgical procedures have some risk of side effects. Not every person experiences the same side effects or severity of symptoms. Common side effects of prostate removal include:

    As with any surgery that requires anesthesia, constipation after prostate removal may be experienced.Your doctor may prescribe stool softeners to prevent constipation and straining against the incision site.

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    Recovery After Greenlight Laser Surgery

    Please note that these recommendations apply to patients who undergo Greenlight Laser prostatectomy at New York Urology Specialists. Other surgeons may have different recommendations. Please contact your surgeon for instructions.

    Patients can have a regular diet after the Greenlight laser of the prostate. For patients who undergo Greenlight laser prostatectomy at New York Urology Specialists, you may drink alcohol socially within reason once youre not taking medications.

    You also may engage in regular nonstrenuous activities such as walking. Men should avoid sexual activity for 3-4 weeks after the Greenlight laser procedure to allow the prostate to heal. Similarly, biking and strenuous running should be avoided for 3-4 weeks after the procedure as it may provoke bleeding.

    Also Check: What Age To Screen For Prostate Cancer

    Questions To Ask Your Doctor Or Nurse

    You may find it helpful to keep a note of any questions you have to take to your next appointment.

    • What type of surgery do you recommend for me and why?
    • What type of surgery do you recommend for me? Will you try to do nerve-sparing surgery?
    • How many of these operations have you done and how many do you do each year?
    • Can I see the results of radical prostatectomies youve carried out?
    • What pain relief will I get after the operation?
    • How and when will we know whether the operation has removed all of the cancer?
    • How often will my PSA level be checked?
    • What is the chance of needing further treatment after surgery?

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    If The Cancer Comes Back

    If your prostate cancer comes back at some point, your treatment options will depend on where the cancer is, what types of treatment youve already had, and your health. See Treating Prostate Cancer that Doesn’t Go Away or Comes Back After Treatment. For more general information on recurrence, see Understanding Recurrence.

    How You Might Feel

    Update on my prostate surgery, now recovering

    Being diagnosed with prostate cancer can be stressful. It is natural to have a wide variety of emotions after the diagnosis and during treatment, including anger, fear anxiety, sadness and resentment. These feelings may become stronger over time as you adjust to the physical side effects of treatment.

    Everyone has their own ways of coping with their emotions. There is no right or wrong way. It is important to give yourself and those around you time to deal with the emotions that cancer can cause. For support, call Cancer Council 13 11 20.

    If you have continued feelings of sadness, have trouble getting up in the morning or have lost motivation to do things that previously gave you pleasure, you may be experiencing depression. This is quite common among people who have had cancer.

    If you think you may be depressed or feel that your emotions are affecting your day-to-day life, talk to your GP. Counselling or medication even for a short time may help. Some people can get a Medicare rebate for sessions with a psychologist. Cancer Council may also run a counselling program in your area.

    For information about coping with depression and anxiety, call Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636. For 24-hour crisis support, call Lifeline 13 11 14.

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    Keeping Health Insurance And Copies Of Your Medical Records

    Even after treatment, its very important to keep health insurance. Tests and doctor visits cost a lot, and although no one wants to think of their cancer coming back, this could happen.

    At some point after your cancer treatment, you might find yourself seeing a new doctor who doesnt know your medical history. Its important to keep copies of your medical records to give your new doctor the details of your diagnosis and treatment.

    Prostatectomy: What To Expect

    Many prostate cancer patients dont need surgery. But for young patients with prostate cancer that hasnt spread, a surgery called a prostatectomy can help them become cancer-free and put prostate cancer treatment behind them. John Davis, M.D., a urologist who performs hundreds of prostatectomies each year, explains what patients undergoing this procedure can expect, including prostatectomy side effects and risks.

    What is a prostatectomy?

    A prostatectomy is the surgical removal of all or part of the prostate gland. Prostate cancer surgery types include:

    • Robotic prostate cancer surgery: In this procedure, called robotic radical prostatectomy, a surgeon makes several small incisions in the lower abdomen and uses a robotic device to remove the prostate.
    • Open radical prostatectomy: The surgeon makes one large incision in the lower abdomen to remove the prostate.

    Robotic radical prostatectomies have become increasingly common over the years, and most surgeons prefer to conduct the procedure this way because its a little easier on them. But its important to know that both methods are safe.

    Who needs a prostatectomy?

    For some patients, prostatectomies will be the only treatment they undergo. Others who may have a difficult time recovering from surgery or have more advanced cancer may also have chemotherapy or hormone therapy treatment as well.

    How long does it take to recover from a prostatectomy?

    What side effects do patients experience following prostate removal?

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    What Is Prostate Cancer

    most common cancer in men in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention .

    Prostate cancer occurs when cells in the gland divide uncontrollably. This leads to a lump, or tumor, that draws nutrients and blood away from other vital functions in the area.

    Acinar adenocarcinomas, or slow-growing tumors, are the most common type of prostate cancer

    Thousands of men die in the U.S. every year from prostate cancer, but the CDC highlights that most men who have prostate cancer are over 65 years of age and usually die from a

    Robotic Prostate Surgery Recovery Time

    What Happens If You Have Prostate Cancer

    Whats the recovery period like after robotic prostate surgery? When can I go back to work after prostate surgery?

    If you are considering the da Vinci robotic form of prostate surgery, I just went through it, and I can tell you how the recovery period went for me.

    First, I spent a couple of days in the hospital could have been sent home after one night but I decided to stay. I had a private room, was getting great care, and was able to walk around the floor whenever I wanted to. Why go home?

    After two nights in the hospital, I was discharged and sent home. Suggestion: make sure you know how to work the Foley catheter before you leave. The nurse should show you how to change it and empty it in a clean and antiseptic manner. The hospital provided me with 2 collection bags: a larger overnight bag and a smaller bag that attaches to your leg. I ended up using the larger bag 99% of the time at home, because the smaller collection bag just filled up too fast. I couldnt even get through watching one football game without having to empty it.

    The first week at home, you have to take it very easy. You just had surgery and dont want something to go wrong and have to go back to the hospital to get it corrected. You read the newspaper, watch TV, take naps, convalesce. Get used to moving around the house holding your catheter collection bag, which is kind of red at first.

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    Living With Prostate Cancer

    From the moment you are diagnosed with prostate cancer, its important to make mindful decisions about your diet and lifestyle. Your everyday choices are vital to the success of your treatment and your recovery from the disease, and its a great way to take back some of the control that cancer and its treatment may have had on your life. Additionally, there is growing scientific evidence that suggests healthy diet and lifestyle practices may actually slow the growth and progression of prostate cancer.

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