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Prostate Cancer: Care After Treatment

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To help speed your recovery from prostate cancer, it's helpful to know about some self-care you can do at home. Note, however, that these are general guidelines and may not apply to every patient. Always follow your doctor's specific instructions for care after treatment.

Incision Care

Small pieces of tape (called Steri-Strips) will remain over the incision site and may be removed 10 to 14 days after surgery. The incision should be kept clean and dry for one week after surgery. Take sponge baths instead of showers.

Do not go swimming until you have discussed this with your doctor at your follow-up appointment.

Pain Relief

You will be given a prescription for pain relief after the procedure. You can also take Extra Strength Tylenol if that provides enough relief. Do not take aspirin or products containing aspirin for the first three days after the procedure.

Skin Care

The area may be black and blue right after the procedure. This will go away in a few days. You may feel numbness, tingling, or discomfort. This is normal.

For pain, you can take a mild pain reliever such as Tylenol. One week after surgery, you can take a warm shower, which may also provide comfort.

Exercise

Consult your doctor before resuming any physical activity.

Driving

Most men can resume driving 10 to 14 days after surgery. Ask your doctor for specific advice.

Sexual Relations

Your doctor will let you know when you can resume having sex.

When to Call Your Doctor

When you go home from the hospital after prostate cancer treatment, call your doctor if you have:

  • A fever higher than 101 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Increased pain not eased by pain medication
  • Trouble urinating, such as an inability to urinate at all, pain with urination, blood in the urine (when it is not expected), or unusually frequent urination

 

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Jay B. Zatzkin, MD, FACP on August 01, 2013
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