How Patients Should Prepare for Prostate Cancer Surgery

How to prepare for prostate cancer surgery explained.

How to Prepare for Prostate Cancer SurgeryPatients often wonder how to prepare for prostate cancer surgery. Dr. David Albala explains some simple steps to prepare for prostate cancer surgery. Patients should generally stop any blood-thinning medication 7 to 10 days prior to prostate cancer surgery as your doctor advises. This includes common medications such as Aspirin. Consult your physician in all matters involving medications.

To prepare for prostate cancer surgery, whether it’s open surgical technique or robotic techniques, is relatively simple and relatively painless for most patients. It includes a clear liquid diet as well as mild agents to relax and clear bowels. Patients are typically not allowed to eat or drink anything after midnight on the day of the surgery to prepare for prostate cancer surgery. The patient will then come in for prostate cancer surgery in the morning or early afternoon. To prepare for prostate cancer surgery, whether it’s open surgical technique or robotic techniques, is relatively simple and painless for most patients.


David Albala, MD:  So, what do you need to do as a patient to prepare for prostate cancer surgery?

Once, you made a decision with your surgeon, the preparation for prostate cancer surgery is relatively simple.  You need to feel comfortable and make sure that that’s the decision that you want, but once you have done that, typically I like to tell my patients to stop any blood thinning medication for 7 to 10 days prior to the surgical procedure.  So, if a patient is on a baby aspirin or if they are on a blood thinning medication, once you have got a clearance from your medical doctor, you should stop those medications because bleeding with any surgical procedure is a risk of the procedure.

The day before patients are having surgery, I like to start them on a clear liquid diet and then I give them a small bowel prep with magnesium citrate, its usually a small bottle of the drink that helps give the intestines a clean out, much like what we do with colonoscopy, but this is typically a much easier prep to do than that patients undergo a colonoscopy.

Once the bowel has been prepped, typically patients aren’t allowed to eat anything or drink anything after midnight on the day before their surgery and then they come in for their surgical procedure in the morning or early afternoon and the surgical procedure is done.  The preparation for prostate surgery whether it’s open surgical technique or robotic techniques that are used is relatively simple and relatively painless for most patients.

Dr. David Albala
Dr. David M. Albala is Chief of Urology at Crouse Hospital in Syracuse, New York and Medical Director for Associated Medical Professionals. He is considered a national and international authority in laparoscopic and robotic urological surgery and has been an active teacher in this area for over 20 years.


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