Radical prostatectomy operation

This page is intended to act as a resource for patients who are due to have an operation to remove their prostate following a diagnosis of prostate cancer.

If you require general information about prostate cancer, please visit the Prostate Cancer UK website (opens in new window) >

Below you will find information about what to expect before, during and after your admission to hospital, along with useful resources, advice and contacts to support you through the operation.

If you are having robotic surgery, you can access information about your procedure by The British Association of Urological Surgeons (opens in new window) >.

Alternatively, if you are due to have an open prostatectomy, you can access information about your procedure by The British Association of Urological Surgeons (opens in new window) >.

Please note, you do not have to watch or read everything. However, we do strongly recommend you do as research as it is shown that patients recover better after surgery if they are well-informed.

Key contacts

Consultant secretaries

If you have any questions about your appointments and operation date, please contact your consultant's secretary:

Mr Thomas
Telephone: 01332 788076 (secretary)

Mr Singh, Mr Zafar and Mr Wagh
Telephone: 01332 788078 (secretary)

Same Day Emergency Care (SDEC) / Surgical Assessment Unit (SAU)

For urgent advice after your operation, e.g. catheter concerns, worsening pain, bowel problems.

Same Day Emergency Care (SDEC)
Telephone: 01332 785 102
Open: Monday to Sunday, 7am - 7pm

Surgical Assessment Unit (SAU)
Telephone: 01332 786623 or 01332 787436
Open: Monday to Sunday, 7pm - 7am

Continence and Andrology Nurse Specialists

If you have any questions about catheter removal, continence or erection advice, please call 01332 789 162.

Urology Oncology Nurse Specialists

If you have any questions about your cancer diagnosis, cancer follow-up, general advice and support, please call 01332 789 164.

Before your operation

Before your radical prostatectomy operation, your consultant’s secretary will contact you with a date for your operation. You will also receive an appointment to attend the hospital for a pre-operative assessment a few days before your operation. At this appointment you may be given some carbohydrate drinks, these will help prepare your body for your operation and help your body recover afterwards. These drinks are not suitable for all patients, so some patients may not be offered these, e.g. if you have diabetes.

Please continue any long-standing pain medication prior to surgery unless you have been advised to stop.

For information about staying in hospital and having an operation, please use the resources below:

Being as fit and healthy as possible before your operation will help your recovery. Derby County Community Trust and Burton Albion Community Trust offer advice and support to those who have undergone cancer treatment, to help rebuild strength and confidence. Access more information through their websites below and make a self-referral if you're interested.

The day of your operation

Arriving at the theatre

This video explains what will happen when you arrive at the theatre for your radical prostatectomy operation. This is NOT a video of the operation, no surgery is shown.

Access what to expect when you go to theatre video (opens in new window) >

How a robotic assisted radical prostatectomy is performed

This animated video shows how a robotic assisted radical prostatectomy is performed. Not all patients will want to see what happens during the operation, there is no pressure to watch this video.

Access animated video of robotic assisted laparoscopic prostatectomy (opens in new window) >

This video was not produced by University Hospitals of Derby and Burton.

After your operation and at home advice

Wounds and dressings

We recommend leaving the wound dressings in place for 48 hours after surgery. The dressings are showerproof but if you think they have become wet and not attached properly, please remove them. When you remove the dressing it might be more comfortable to do this in the shower, pat the skin dry with a clean towel or air dry. If needed, apply a new dressing to protect you from catching the clips. Look for signs of infection such as redness (redness may be harder to see on brown or black skin) around the wound (more than 2cm), pain, swelling, leaking or odour. If you are worried about your wound, please contact the practice nurse at your GP surgery.

Pain management

Managing pain well will help your recovery. Below is a video about pain relief after surgery. This video is not specific to your surgery, but all of the information is relevant. Access Acute Pain Management video (opens in new window) >

For advice about pain relief at home, please access painkillers to take home patient information leaflet (opens in new window) >

Eating and drinking

Food and drink provide essential nutrients needed by our bodies to heal and recover after surgery. Try to eat healthily before and after your operation. If your appetite is affected, try eating little and often.


It is common for your bowel movements to be altered after your operation (poo more often or less than before or more urgently). This is caused by many things, such as the anaesthetic, painkillers, change in diet and reduced mobility. When you leave hospital, you will be provided with some laxatives. If you become constipated, please take the laxatives following the instructions. If your constipation persists and you are unable to poo, please call the Surgical Assessment Unit (SAU) or Same Day Emergency Care (SDEC) using the telephone numbers in the 'key contacts' list at the top of the page. Do not use enemas or suppositories at home as they could cause injury to the rectum (bottom).

Exercise and fitness

Exercising and keeping fit helps our bodies to stay healthy. Before you go home after your operation, you will see the physiotherapist who will give you advice about your mobility and provide you with the following patient information leaflets:

​​​​​When you feel able to exercise, do so gradually and build up slowly. If you would like advice on fitness and exercise, please contact Derby County Community Trust or Burton Albion Community Trust.

Catheter and catheter removal

After your operation you will have a catheter. When you leave hospital, you will be given a 'catheter passport' booklet. Access my urinary catheter passport (opens in new window) >

Pelvic floor exercises

After removal of your catheter, you will be asked to perform pelvic floor exercises. These exercises will help you to regain control of your bladder. For more information:

Difficulty achieving an erection

Your ability to get and keep an erection will be affected by this operation. For more information, access video about erection advice after prostate removal (opens in new window) >

Leaving hospital

Access leaving hospital page > for general advice about leaving hospital (this is not specific to your operation).

Further information

If you need any further information or have any questions, please see the 'key contacts' list at the top of the page and contact the relevant person. If you are unsure who to contact, please telephone your consultant's secretary who will advise you.

Useful resources and support groups

Useful websites

Prostate Cancer UK

Access Prostate Cancer UK website (opens in new window) >
Telephone: 0800 074 8383

Prostate Cancer UK offer information, advice and support. There are online patient forums where you can talk to other men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer and had the same prostate operation.

Surgery support pack

Prostate Cancer UK offer surgery support packs which is full of useful items and information for prostate surgery. To request for a support pack, please call 0800 074 8383 and request a ‘surgery support pack’. More information can be accessed on the Prostate Cancer UK website information website (opens in new window >

Tackle Prostate Cancer

Tackle Prostate Cancer is a patient-led, UK-wide charity representing people with Prostate Cancer and those who care for them.

Access Tackle Prostate Cancer website (opens in new window) >

The British Association of Urological Surgeons

If you are having robotic surgery, you can access information about your procedure by The British Association of Urological Surgeons (opens in new window) >.

Alternatively, if you are due to have an open prostatectomy, you can access information about you procedure by The British Association of Urological Surgeons (opens in new window) >.


Support groups

The Derby Prostate Cancer Support Group

The Derby Prostate Cancer Support group is nurse-led, and aims to:

  • Provide support and information to anyone affected by prostate cancer, their family and carers, in Derby and surrounding areas.
  • Provide additional support from diagnosis to living with prostate cancer and beyond.
  • Work in partnership with other organisations to further the aims of the group.
  • Arrange funding for its own requirements, costs and expenses.
  • Signpost group member to other forms of support if needed.

We have a variety of speakers who cover topics on healthy lifestyle, fatigue, mindfulness, physical activity, financial/benefits advice, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, surgery and much more.

The support group meet on the second Tuesday of every month (excluding August), 1.15pm - 3pm, at Our Lady of Lourdes, RC Church – Parish Centre, 36 Uttoxeter Road, Mickleover, Derby, DE3 9NE.

Free parking is available, and refreshments are provided.

If you wish to join the group or have any questions, please call 01332 789164 or email dhft.prostatecancersupportgroup@nhs.net.