Using this guide What's covered

Here you’ll find the answers to many of your questions about prostate removal. Learn how it works, what it may cost, what your recovery may be like, and more.

To see how radical prostatectomy and trans-urethral resections (TURP) are done, view our animations below. For personal insights, see our patient experience videos in which HCF members talk frankly about their preparation, surgery and recovery.

Cost indicator

Discover the typical out-of-pocket costs HCF members can expect to pay for prostate removal, and learn how your choice of doctor and hospital affect that cost.

Here, you can see the costs for radical prostatectomy and trans-urethral resection (TURP). 


Radical costs TURP costs

Learn about radical prostatectomy

This short animation shows different approaches to the surgery and how the prostate (and any other necessary tissue) is removed. 

Learn about TURP

This animation shows how scopes provide a view of the urethra, prostate and bladder and access to the prostate, which can then be removed. 


What is prostate removal?

Prostate removal (prostatectomy) is an operation to remove all or part of the prostate gland. It may also include the removal of the seminal vesicles, surrounding tissues and the nerve bundles on either side of the prostate that are responsible for erections. Seminal vesicles are a pair of glands that are attached to the prostate – they secrete a significant proportion of the fluid that ultimately becomes semen.

The prostate gland is a walnut-sized gland that produces and secretes the fluid in semen. It’s located at the base of the urinary bladder and wraps around the urethra. The urethra is the tube that carries urine from the bladder out through the penis.

Why is it done?

Because the prostate gland almost encircles the upper end of the urethra, any enlargement and tumour in the prostate gland can restrict normal flow, causing symptoms such as difficult, painful or frequent urination. The two main reasons for prostatectomy are benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and cancer of the prostate.

BPH is a non-cancerous condition where the prostate grows larger due to benign growth of cells within the prostate gland. It commonly occurs in men over 60, as a result of hormonal changes. The main symptoms are urinary obstruction and inability to empty the bladder completely.

Carcinoma of the prostate is a malignant tumour of the prostate gland. This cancer commonly occurs in men over 50.

Where is it done?

A prostatectomy is done in a hospital. The average length of stay for a TURP is 3-4 days; for a radical prostatectomy it can be 5-10 days.

How long does it take?

It depends on the type of procedure performed.

Who is involved?

  • Your urologist
  • There may be an assistant surgeon
  • Anaesthetist
  • Nurses
  • Pathologist (for blood tests and/or specimen samples)


Preparing for surgery

Choosing a specialist

How to find a surgeon who specialises in your procedure.
Learn more

Questions for your specialist

What you should be asking before going ahead with surgery.
Learn more

Preparing for your procedure

What to expect leading up to surgery and what to take to hospital.
Learn more

Surgery and aftercare

Going to hospital

What to expect on the day of your procedure.
Learn more

Your procedure

What happens in the operating theatre.
Learn more


Your hospital stay and recovery.
Learn more

Patient experiences

HCF members who've had prostate removal talk about their preparation, hospital stay and recovery.

View videos

Living with prostate cancer

People who've experienced prostate cancer talk about the impact diagnosis and treatment has had on their lives, and how they've coped with the physical and emotional challenges they've faced. 

View videos


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Information is provided by HCF in good faith for the convenience of members. It is not an endorsement or recommendation of any form of treatment nor is it a substitute for medical advice, and you should rely on the advice of your treating doctors in relation to all matters concerning your health. Every effort has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information, however HCF takes no responsibility for any injury, loss, damage or other consequences of the use of this information.