Can I get urinary incontinence or impotency if I undergo robotic prostatectomy?
Urinary incontinence can be temporary in case of a prostatectomy because of the disruption or distress to the sphincter muscles, which control the release of the urine. Typically, when the catheter is removed, you will experience the improvement of bladder control. Normal continence is regained within 6-8 months.
Speaking about impotence after prostatectomy you need to know that the prostate does not affect the ability to have erections, however, the nerves that are contributing to the erectile function can be affected during prostatectomy as they are close to the prostate gland so, after the removal of the prostate, the erectile function can be lost. Using robot-assisted surgery the surgeon is more capable to see every little detail inside the surgical field due to the high-quality vision system. The 3D lens cameras offer an up to 10 times magnification of the naked eye view and this helps the surgeon avoid damaging the nerves responsible for erectile function.
Regaining erection depends on many factors like age, sexual function prior to the operation, medical condition (whether the nerves were spared), medications, emotional state, and stress. Time for recovering the erectile function varies between 1 to 2 years after prostatectomy.