Nerve Sparing Prostatectomy for Prostate Cancer

Nerve Sparing Prostatectomy vs Radical Prostatectomy

Traditionally, to cure locally advanced prostate cancer, a major surgical procedure known as a radical prostatectomy is done under general anaesthetic, to remove the prostate gland and affected surrounding areas such as soft tissues, seminal vesicles and even the lymph nodes (depending on the probability of being cancerous); these are typically low precision procedures however, nerve sparing prostatectomy  can maximises precision but only in suitable candidates.

Nerve Sparing Prostatectomy
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The aim of a Nerve Sparing Prostatectomy

These cancer-clearing operations rely on highly skilled surgeons and their experience in minimising unnecessary damage to the prostate or delicate erectile nerves nearby; such nerve damage can impact control of blood supply to the penis, potentially causing temporary or permanent in/continence and/or erectile dysfunction.

The Benefits

While clearing cancer just as effectively as standard radical prostatectomies, this procedure may also maintain the sex lives of most sexually active patients (this is usually unavailable to patient’s whose cancer has breached the prostate). These surgical procedures also have a marginal, but often short-lived impact on a patient’s continence and/or incontinence.

Potential candidates

Today, as the prostate cancer assessment process improves and diagnoses are typically made sooner, the nerve sparing prostatectomy procedure is commonplace, but it’s most appropriate for patients with prostate-confined cancer. Highly advanced MRI scans and template biopsies provide specific insights and clarity when assessing a patient’s suitability for this surgery.

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