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The Pelvic Floor After Prostatectomy

Welcome to the final post in the Movember series. 

For this post we are talking about prostatectomy and wanted to share some quick facts about prostatectomy surgery as well as how pelvic floor therapy is helpful.

  • A radical prostatectomy is a procedure that is performed to remove the prostate gland as a treatment option for prostate cancer, one of the leading cancers in men. 
  • In the case of men with an enlarged prostate, a TURP procedure might be performed, otherwise known as a transurethral resection of the prostate, wherein only  a portion of the prostate is removed, vs the entire organ.
  • Typically after surgery there are 2 major pelvic floor issues that males will encounter: erectile dysfunction and urinary incontinence. 
    • With regards to erectile dysfunction, most men will find it difficult post-operatively to achieve and to maintain an erection. 
    • Regarding incontinence, men experience stress incontinence and poor control of urinary function after surgery. 
    • For some people these issues may naturally resolve after a few weeks but for others, they will need therapy.  
  • Pelvic floor therapy has been shown to be a useful tool in the treatment of urinary incontinence as well as sexual dysfunction. More specifically, “an individualized pelvic PT program aimed at normalizing pelvic floor function (as opposed to a pure Kegel strengthening program) can be helpful in reducing SUI and pelvic pain” as per (Scott et al. 2020)
  • Results of another study (Aydın Sayılan and Özbaş 2018) indicated that consistency with a 6 week pelvic floor muscle program significantly improved incontinence symptoms. 
    • Focusing on pelvic floor awareness, strength and endurance is highly important to ensure appropriate urinary function and avoid incontinence. 
  • A holistic approach should also be considered, as these symptoms also have a psychological impact on those dealing with them. 
    • Sex therapy should not be overlooked, for both the individual as well as their partner. 
    • Mobility via yoga (as well as strengthening), mindfulness, and nutrition should not be overlooked. 

Are you dealing with prostate cancer?
Have you recently had prostate surgery or are you scheduled for one in the near future?
Let us know if you have questions:

Yours in Health,

Dr. J


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