If you have had a robotic prostatectomy, it is essential for you your own safety and for the success of your surgery that you carefully read and follow these instructions.
While robotic prostatectomy is performed routinely, it is still a relatively major surgery, which will require some time and effort to recover. Life will be harder for at least a few weeks, if not months after surgery. However, it is certainly preferable to the life-threatening hardships of letting the cancer progress unchecked. Be positive, you can get through this!
Leaving the Hospital
Patients will generally be discharged from the hospital about 24 hours after surgery. Each patient will leave the hospital with a urinary catheter in place. This catheter is known as a Foley catheter and is held in place by a balloon inside the bladder. It allows continuous drainage of the bladder into a small external collection bag, which is emptied as needed. Do not try to remove this catheter on your own. It must remain in place until you have healed enough that it is no longer needed. Read further down in these instructions for more information.
A drain is placed at the time of surgery to remove fluids from the operative field. It is usually removed the next day prior to discharge but may be left in place when you are sent home. You will be taught how to empty the drain bulb and record the output. Once the drainage decreases to an acceptable level (usually less than 100 cc. per day) the drain will be removed. Excessive drainage may require the Foley catheter to remain longer than the usual seven days.
Since you will not be allowed to drive yourself, you will need someone to drive you home.