If you’ve had a general anaesthetic or an opioid pain medication, you may feel different for 2 or 3 days with more fatigue or difficulties with your memory. You shouldn’t drive or drink alcohol if this is the case. Also, avoid making big or important decisions.

During the first few weeks, you may experience some urine leakage. You may need to wear an incontinence pad. A continence advisor can help you reduce the impact of incontinence.
Scrotal swelling
Your scrotum may be swollen for up to a week after surgery. Wearing supportive briefs or an athletic support can improve your comfort. When you’re resting, elevate your scrotum on a rolled towel.

Bladder spasms 

Cramping pains called bladder spasms can happen while you have a catheter in your bladder. You may feel like an urge to urinate, pain at the tip of your penis, or brief pelvic or rectal pressure. The spasms can cause urine or blood to squirt out of your penis during a bowel movement. If bladder spasms become a problem, call your doctor. They can prescribe or recommend medication to reduce the spasms. Some medications for bladder spasms need to be stopped 24 hours before your catheter is removed.

Bowel problems

You may not have normal bowel movements for 3 to 5 days after surgery. Try to avoid straining when you have a bowel movement. If you’re troubled by constipation, a stool softener may help. Increasing the amount of fibre in your diet and drinking plenty of fluids is also helpful.

Going back to work and normal activities

You’ll need at least 2 weeks off from work after the surgery. It’ll be up to 4 to 6 weeks if you have a physically active job. For open surgery, your recovery time can be between 6 and 8 weeks.
Increase your activity gradually. Try to get up and walk every hour during the day. Don’t lift items heavier than a brick or take part in strenuous activity for at least 4 to 6 weeks. You won’t be fit to drive for 2 weeks. Then you can start driving as long as you’re confident you can control your urine.
Sexual activity
You can have sex around 2 weeks after your surgery. While it’s uncommon, surgery for enlarged prostate can affect your erections. Your doctor can prescribe medication to help with erection problems. If you still have problems, there are vacuum devices and implants available.
Catheter care and removal

If you’ve come home with a catheter in place, follow the nurse’s instructions for catheter care. The nurse can tell you how, when and where your catheter will be removed.
Follow up

You’ll need to make a follow-up appointment with your urologist, probably after 6 to 12 weeks, to check on your results.

Watching out for problems

Call your urologist immediately if you have:
  • racing heart, shortness of breath or chest pain
  • fever or chills
  • nausea, vomiting or severe abdominal bloating
  • severe pain
  • pain in your thigh, calf or groin
  • swelling or redness in your leg
  • redness or discharge from your incision
  • problems urinating or having a bowel movement
  • a blocked catheter
  • signs of a urinary tract infection (painful urination, an urgent need to urinate, unpleasant smelling urine, bladder pain).


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.