During the surgery, a small incision about the size of a dime is made in the patient’s lower abdomen. The surgeon then inflates the abdomen before inserting the surgical laparoscopic and imaging devices.
The imaging device guides the surgeon as he or she uses the robotic surgical tool to remove the prostate. A Foley catheter is then inserted into the area to drain excessive fluids and blood. The catheter will remain in place for up to a week after the surgery.
After the catheter is inserted, the surgical instruments are withdrawn, and the incision is closed with sutures or staples. The patient is then taken to recovery to awaken from anesthesia. He will remain in the hospital for one to two days to heal and recuperate before being discharged and allowed to go home.
The Benefits of a Robotic Prostatectomy
A robotic prostatectomy offers numerous advantages not found with invasive prostate surgery. To start, robotic prostate surgery is faster and easier to heal from than the traditional form of the operation. Instead of a large incision, surgeons can make a smaller, dime-size incision in the lower abdomen.
Second, robotic prostatectomy surgery is less painful than invasive prostate operations. Patients who undergo this surgery require fewer pain medications and can typically resume their normal routines within three weeks after their operations.
A key component of the surgery also involves the cooling of the tissue surrounding the prostate. The cooling of the surrounding tissue eliminates painful inflammation and swelling. Patients are typically able to sit, walk, and lie down without being encumbered by swelling and inflammation of the treated area.
Finally, robotic prostatectomies involve less bleeding and a lower risk of infection. Patients experience a lower risk of post-surgical operations that are often found with traditional prostate removal surgery.
Recovering from a Robotic Prostatectomy
The total recovery period for a robotic prostatectomy lasts about six weeks. During that time, patients will be advised to limit their activities and to avoid strenuous exercise.
The doctor may also recommend that the patient avoid taking baths, but instead take showers to prevent infection and irritation of the area. They can typically return to work after three weeks.