A prostatectomy is a surgical procedure for the partial or complete removal of the prostate. It may be performed to treat prostate cancer or benign prostatic hyperplasia. A common surgical approach to prostatectomy includes making a surgical incision and removing the prostate gland (or part of it). This may be accomplished with either of two methods, the retropubic or suprapubic incision (lower abdomen), or a perineum incision (through the skin between the scrotum and the rectum). Prior to having a prostatectomy, it's often necessary to have a prostate biopsy. Please see this procedure for additional information. Radical prostatectomy (prostate removal) is surgery to remove all of the prostate gland and some of the tissue around it. It is done to treat prostate cancer.
There are 4 main types or techniques of radical prostatectomy surgery. These procedures take about 3 to 4 hours:
For these procedures, you may have general anesthesia so that you are asleep and pain free. Or, you will get medicine to numb the lower half of your body (spinal or epidural anesthesia).