Intimacy after prostate cancer surgery

Sex and prostate cancer survivorship

prostate sexual functionProstate cancer requiring prostatectomy – surgery to remove all or part of the prostate gland – emits alarm in most men who fear they might not be able to perform sexually after the surgery. While in the past the concern was valid, today the prostate cancer patient is treated more as a whole person rather than as a patient with cancer. Sexuality is incorporated into their care and more men than ever are achieving erections and intimacy after prostate cancer surgery.

Prostate Cancer Survivorship Program

The goal of the prostate cancer survivorship clinic at the University of Michigan Cancer Center is to bring the patient back to 100% performance. The clinic team includes a variety of medical and psychological professionals who help patients and partners achieve sexual intimacy and sexual intercourse. The patient is seen until he is able to perform at his level of satisfaction.

Today, surgeries performed by the doctors and their surgical teams are more effective in sparing sexual performance after the prostatectomy, and have shortened recovery times. In our survivorship clinic, the patient and partner see a sexual therapist for an evaluation after surgery. This discussion about coping with sexual changes after prostate cancer and developing new sexuality can give hope and ideas for moving forward. Afterward, the patient and partner meet with the Nurse Practitioner who explores the best way for the patient to achieve the goal of having 100% erections. They will discuss different medication options and aids, such as vacuum erection pumps, penile injections and a medicated urethral system for erections, or MUSE.

The clinic nurse is also available to talk about how to administer chosen medication, and many of these are available in the clinic through participation in clinical trials.

The U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center Community Outreach Program is sponsoring a MEN’S Fellowship Breakfast to discuss prostate cancer, sexual function and men’s health research.

  • WHEN: Saturday, September 21, 2013 from 9 – 11 a.m. Breakfast is served from 8:30 – 9 a.m.
  • WHERE: Washtenaw Community College—Morris Lawrence BLDG—4800 E. Huron River Dr., Ann Arbor, MI  48105.


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The U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Community Outreach Program is committed to educating the general public about cancer and its prevention through special events and partnerships with local organizations. To request a member of our Speakers Bureau for an event, call 734-998-7074


CCC 25 years button150x150The University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center’s 1,000 doctors, nurses, care givers and researchers are united by one thought: to deliver the highest quality, compassionate care while working to conquer cancer through innovation and collaboration. The center is among the top-ranked national cancer programs, and #1 in Michigan for cancer patient care. Seventeen multidisciplinary clinics offer one-stop access to teams of specialists for personalized treatment plans, part of the ideal patient care experience. Patients also benefit through access to promising new cancer therapies.