Have you had a little leaking after prostate surgery? Maybe you let out a little pee when you sneeze or cough? If so, you’re not alone, but physical therapy might be just what you need.
Radical Prostatectomy is a common surgery for men with prostate cancer. It has a high success rate, with more than 80% of men living at 10 years after the operation.1 But as with any surgery it has risks. Incontinence or urine leaking post-radical prostatectomy is extremely common, but it isn’t a side effect that any man should have to grin and bear.
How Quickly will I Regain Continence after Radical Prostatectomy?
Most men will regain continence within 12 months of their radical prostatectomy, but that is not all men. Studies do not report generally beyond 12 months, but you don’t have to wait a whole year to regain your continence. In one study, men who were immediately sent to pelvic floor physical therapy after their radical prostatectomy were continent on average within 44 days, which was almost half the time for men who didn’t receive PT (76 days).2
How Can Incontinence be Treated after Radical Prostatectomy?
Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy. If you are used to thinking about physical therapy for your knee or shoulder, you aren’t off base. But a PT who is trained in pelvic floor physical therapy can help relieve a variety of symptoms including incontinence after a radical prostatectomy. Often times, pelvic floor physical therapy is thought of for women, but shouldn’t us guys have access to better quality of life too?
What does a Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist do?
When it comes to your pelvic floor, it isn’t that different from any other part of your body. It is made up of muscles and bones that keep your internal organs inside. Any time you have an issue with your muscles or bones, a physical therapist should be your first call. And the case of your pelvic floor muscles is no different. (Want to know more about your Pelvic Floor? Check out our recent blog on Pelvic Floor Anatomy.) Following a radical prostatectomy, your muscles need to be properly strengthened. A pelvic floor physical therapist is trained to teach proper breathing and muscle coordination so that you can gain the strength necessary to regain your continence and your confidence. Those men who got the treatment they needed had an extra month of their life where they didn’t have to worry about using a pad, or packing an extra change of clothes, or the embarrassment of an accident in public. They were able to take back control over their lives and live the way they wanted. If you’ve had radical prostatectomy and you worry about leaks, aren’t you ready to get your life back? If so, call us today to get your evaluation scheduled (405) 400-8909.
Love Your Life,
-FYZICAL Therapy & Balance Centers of Oklahoma City