Complications After Prostate Surgery

What You Should Know About the Risks of Prostate Procedures

prostate surgery complications, complications of prostate surgery
The Prostate Gland. Image: © ADAM

There are many reasons why a man might need a prostate procedure.  He may be experiencing a benign enlargement of the prostate that makes it difficult to urinate, he may be experiencing frequent infections of the prostate, or, unfortunately, he may have prostate cancer.  

The Unique Nature of Prostate Surgery

Surgery on the prostate comes with a unique set of issues, concerns that are not present with most surgical procedures.

 This is because the prostate is closely linked with two important functions in the human body: the ability to urinate and the ability to have sexual intercourse.  Early prostate surgeries may have been an effective treatment, but they were also known to frequently end the ability to obtain an erection and have sexual intercourse and sometimes resulted in incontinence of urine. 

The procedures used to treat the prostate have dramatically improved over the last decades and having a prostate procedure no longer absolutely means an end to a man's ability to have sex.  Incontinence has also improved as surgical techniques have changed.

Because of the unique complications associated with prostate surgery, it is important to be fully aware of the potential for serious problems after a procedure.  While the risk of experiencing some of these issues has decreased dramatically in recent years, they are still very real possibilities for men undergoing prostate procedures.

Prostate Surgery Complications:

In addition to the general risks of surgery, and the risks associated with anesthesia, patients who have prostate surgery face some very specific complications. These complications vary from procedure to procedure, based on the amount of the prostate gland removed and the method used to remove it.

Common Prostate Surgery Complications:

Some of the more common complications include:


Incontinence After Prostate Surgery. Global Robotics Institute at Florida Hospital.

Laparoscopic Robotic Assisted Prostatectomy. University of Michigan Health System. Accessed May 2010.

Transurethral Electro-Resection of the Prostate. Cedars-Sinai. Accessed May 2010.

Transurethral Microwave Technology. Cedars-Sinai. Accessed May 1010.

Transurethral Resection of the Prostate. National Institute of Health. Accessed May 2010.

Urinary Incontinence Following Prostate Cancer Treatment: Incidence and Clinical Presentation. From the Service d'Urologie at the Hôpital Charles Nicolle, Rouen, France (PG), and the Genitourinary Program at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute, Tampa, Florida. Medscape Today.

Continue Reading