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Laparoscopic radical prostatectomy is a form of keyhole surgery for prostate cancer.

Instruments used in the procedure are inserted through small incisions made outside the peritoneum (the tissue that lines the wall of the abdomen). Using a laparoscope, the surgeon is able to view magnified images of the prostate and surrounding organs which allows for very precise removal of the affected tissue. This helps to preserve erectile function and urinary continence. This surgical procedure is almost painless resulting in minimal blood loss with an excellent cancer cure rate and swift recovery. Most patients return to work within 2-3 weeks.

How do I know if I need a radical prostatectomy?

Your GP or Practice Nurse or local specialist nurse will advise if you need surgery. Most patients with this condition present to their GP with either with no symptoms or lower urinary tract symptoms. These may include frequency of passing urine, poor or weak urine stream, urgency and incomplete bladder emptying. Less common symptoms are passing blood in the urine / semen, urinary infection and erectile dysfunction.

What happens during laparoscopic radical prostatectomy?

This surgery takes three to fours hours. It is carried out using general anaesthetic. Your surgeon will make several small incisions (cuts) in your abdomen. They will insert a laparoscope into one incision. This instrument consists of a small tube with a camera and light source. Your surgeon will be able to view the area on a monitor connected to the laparoscope.

During this procedure your surgeon will remove your prostate. They may also remove the seminal vesicles. They will reattach your urethra to your bladder (bladder neck). They may remove the lymph nodes in your pelvis. You may have a drain in your abdomen to drain any extra fluids. A catheter will be left in your bladder to drain urine.

After your operation

You may need to spend one or two nights in hospital. You may have some discomfort and pain but you will be given pain relief. Be sure and let a member of our Healthcare Team know if you are in any pain.

You will probably stay in bed until the morning following your surgery. Then you will be encouraged to get up and move around. You may be asked to wear compression stockings to prevent blood clots.

Going home after laparoscopic radical prostatectomy

You will not be able to drive so please arrange for someone to pick you up on your day of discharge. You will be discharged with the catheter and collection bag. You will need to return to our Outpatient Unit in one to two weeks to have the catheter removed. Our Healthcare Team will show you how to care for your catheter.

You may be very tired when you first go home. You should rest and limit your activity as you regain your strength. Be sure and discuss any return to work with your surgeon.

Most people make a good recovery and return to normal activities following laparoscopic radical prostatectomy. As with any surgery there can be complications:

  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Pain
  • Blood clots

Specific complications of laparoscopic radical prostatectomy:

  • Difficulty passing urine
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Erectile function
  • Damage to other organs

Why not print this treatment page so you can discuss any concerns you may have with your surgeon?

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