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TURP is commonly performed to treat Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH). The required length of hospital stay is usually two to four days.
What occurs during the operation?
TURP is performed under a general or spinal anaesthetic and takes between 30 and 60 minutes.
A telescopic instrument is inserted through the penis along the urethra. The part of the prostate causing the blockage is removed in small pieces via the telescope, using an electrically heated wire loop.
Potential complications of TURP
There is a risk of bleeding, urethral scarring and urine infection.
After TURP potency is not usually affected (the ability to maintain an erection).
Fertility WILL be affected, because the ejaculate containing the sperm passes back into the bladder at climax, rather than being expelled. This is called retrograde ejaculation, the sensation of orgasm should not be altered.
What to expect post-operatively
After the operation, a catheter will be draining the urine away. This may have some blood in it. Irrigating clear fluid will be running through the catheter to clear away blood and clots from the site of the operation. The irrigation will continue until the bleeding settles, usually within 24 to 48 hours.
Once the irrigation has finished, it is important to drink plenty of fluids to help flush the blood and/or clots from the bladder. Bladder spasms may occur whilst the catheter is in place. These may be uncomfortable and may make the patient feel the need to urinate. Medication can be given to relieve these spasms. These will cease once the catheter has been removed.
The catheter is removed usually one to two days after surgery and most men are able to pass urine. There may be some initial discomfort due to the healing site and this could be accompanied with the need to urinate more frequently, these symptoms will settle in a few days. Also, when the catheter is first removed, the urge to urinate can be quite strong, but this usually settles in a few days.
Complete healing will take up to six weeks. It is important to keep up a good fluid intake (two litres). Occasionally blood may be seen in the urine, it is important to increase the fluid intake until this disappears.
It is important not to overexert during the recovery phase as bleeding may reoccur. This includes heavy lifting, gardening, gold and other strenuous activities including driving in heavy traffic.
Avoid constipation, as straining may cause bleeding from the healing prostate. A mild laxative may be necessary if this is suspected to be a problem.
Sexual activity may be resumed once full healing of the prostate has occurred in six weeks.