Thumbnail image of: Male Pelvis: Illustration

Prostatectomy Discharge Information

What is a prostatectomy?

Prostatectomy is surgical removal of all or part of the prostate gland. The prostate gland is part of a man’s reproductive system. It is about the size of a walnut and is inside the body between the bladder and the penis. It surrounds the upper part of the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder out through the penis. It makes fluid that nourishes sperm and helps carry it out of the body during sex. The nerves that control penile erection also run through the prostate.

How can I take care of myself when I go home?

How long it takes to get better depends on the reason you needed a prostatectomy, your treatment, how well you recover, your overall health, and any complications you may have.

Management

  • Your provider will give you a list of your medicines when you leave the hospital.
    • Know your medicines. Know what they look like, how much you should take each time, how often you are to take them, and why you take each one.
    • Take your medicines exactly as your provider tells you to.
    • Carry a list of your medicines in your wallet or purse. Include any nonprescription medicines and supplements on the list.
    • Talk to your provider before you use any other medicines, including nonprescription medicines, supplements, natural remedies, and vitamins.
  • Your provider may prescribe medicine to:
    • Treat pain
    • Treat or prevent an infection
    • Treat or prevent side effects, such as nausea or constipation, from other treatments
  • To care for your surgical wound:
    • Keep your surgical wound clean.
    • If you are told to change the dressing on your surgical wound, wash your hands before changing the dressing and after disposing of the dressing.
  • Follow activity restrictions, such as not driving or operating machinery, as recommended by your healthcare provider or pharmacist, especially if you are taking pain medicines.
  • Ask your provider when you can return to your normal activities.
  • Unless you are told to limit fluids, drink enough fluids to keep your urine light yellow.
  • You may need to go home with a catheter in your bladder until the bladder is working normally again. Your healthcare provider will decide when the catheter can be removed during a follow-up visit.
  • Take care of your health. Try to get at least 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night. Eat a healthy diet and try to keep a healthy weight. If you smoke, try to quit. If you want to drink alcohol, ask your healthcare provider how much is safe for you to drink. Learn ways to manage stress. Exercise according to your healthcare provider’s instructions.

Appointments

  • Follow your provider’s instructions for follow-up appointments.
  • Keep appointments for any testing or treatment you may need.
  • Talk with your provider about any questions or concerns you have.

Call your healthcare provider if you have new or worsening:

  • Trouble emptying your bladder
  • Weak flow of urine or leaking urine
  • Increased urination
  • Blood in urine
  • Pain or burning when urinating
  • Swelling in your scrotum or groin
  • Pain or cramping in your belly
  • Trouble having an erection, or pain when semen comes out of the penis (ejaculation)
  • Bone pain
  • Signs of infection around your surgical wound. These include:
    • The area around the wound is more red or painful
    • The wound area is very warm to touch
    • You have blood, pus, or other fluid coming from the wound area
    • You have a fever higher than 101.5° F (38.6° C)
Developed by RelayHealth.
Acute Care Advisor 2015.1 published by RelayHealth.
Last modified: 2014-11-07
Last reviewed: 2014-10-10
This content is reviewed periodically and is subject to change as new health information becomes available. The information is intended to inform and educate and is not a replacement for medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis or treatment by a healthcare professional.
Copyright ©1986-2015 McKesson Corporation and/or one of its subsidiaries. All rights reserved.

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