Incontinence (urinary leakage) is a common problem after treatment for prostate cancer. This can occur after surgery (prostatectomy), radiation, or other treatments (cryotherapy). Leaking after prostate cancer treatment can be a devastating problem for men. Fortunately there are ways to help! Here’s an introduction to pelvic floor exercises after prostate cancer treatment.
I had surgery for prostate cancer and now Im leaking? What do I do?
There is a lot that can be done. First, it is extremely common to for men to have worse bladder control right after surgery. So, let your body heal in general. Eat well, walk, stay hydrated, avoid strenuous activity, and let your body heal. The body (and your bladder and sphincter muscle) has an amazing ability to heal itself.
I'm still leaking. What do I do now?
Pelvic floor exercises! Research has shown us that most of the healing to your bladder will take place within the first year. So it’s really important to use that year well!! This means getting into a routine of daily pelvic floor strengthening exercises. But first check with your doctor to make sure that it is OK to begin exercises.
In addition, pelvic floor exercises can also help men with another common problem after surgery – erectile dysfunction.
How do I learn to do pelvic floor exercises properly?
This is extremely important! Research has also shown us that, when not given proper education, most men do pelvic exercises incorrectly (they squeeze the wrong muscles!). So, proper education is critical. Pelvic floor physical therapists are great teachers if there is one in your area. Also, ask your physician for a demonstration! This is more effective then reading a handout or illustration.
Are there any other resources I can use to help perform pelvic floor exercises?
Absolutely! This is why we developed the hfitness community and educational resources. We wanted to help men and women have easy access to online resources for pelvic floor health! Check out our SUI (stress incontinence) program that is designed to help not only perform pelvic floor exercises, but also provide education about a bladder smart diet and other helpful tips!
Also, feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more education about pelvic floor health
This blog is part of our blog series on incontinence after prostate treatment. Be sure to check out our other blogs:
- Urinary incontinence after prostate surgery or radiation.
- Pelvic floor exercises after prostate surgery or radiation.
- Surgery to fix incontinence after prostate surgery or radiation.