Robert J Cornell, MD, PA
Urologist located in Houston, TX
Urinary incontinence is common in men who have had surgery for prostate cancer: Between 5-10% of patients who undergo radical prostatectomy for prostate cancer suffer from clinically significant post-prostatectomy urinary incontinence. Dr. Robert J. Cornell, located conveniently in downtown Houston, has years of experience treating post-prostatectomy incontinence, specializing in placing artificial urinary sphincters through a single scrotal incision. To learn more about your treatment options, call our office or book an appointment online.
Post-Prostatectomy Incontinence Q & A
What is post-prostatectomy incontinence?
Post-prostatectomy urinary incontinence (PPI) is the involuntary leakage of urine following radical prostatectomy to treat prostate cancer. PPI is a specific form of stress incontinence in which abdominal pressure from a cough, sneeze, or simple physical strain results in the leakage of urine.
Under normal conditions, your body manages this pressure by contracting your external urinary sphincter, the muscle surrounding the early part of your urethra. However, if you have PPI, this sphincter is unable to maintain closure of the urethra, allowing urinary leakage.
How is post-prostatectomy incontinence treated?
After a prostatectomy, most men see a quick improvement in continence over the first several months after the catheter is removed. However, if after about 9-12 months post-prostatectomy, you’re still dissatisfied with your level of urinary control, Dr. Cornell may recommend an artificial urinary sphincter, otherwise known as the AMS 800™ Urinary Control System.
The AMS 800 is a patient-controlled device that is currently the most effective treatment for PPI. Over 90% of patients report satisfactory urinary control following implantation.
The AMS 800 can be surgically placed in less than one hour through a single small incision in the scrotum which heals with a nearly imperceptible scar. There are no externalized components, and to the casual observer, it’s completely unnoticeable.
The AMS 800 is considered the gold standard by most urologists. With this device, most patients remain dry with only minor leaks or dribbles of urine, usually during strenuous exercise or exertion. As with any medical procedure, the AMS 800 is not 100% effective for all patients. Some people may require additional protection.
Are there treatments other than an artificial urinary sphincter?
While moderate to severe cases of incontinence in men have been treated surgically for years, the majority of incontinent men — those only mildly incontinent — have had few attractive medical options until now. The AdVance™ Male Sling System is an innovative, safe, and effective procedure for men suffering from mild stress urinary incontinence.
With the AdVance procedure, a small sling made of synthetic mesh is placed inside the body through small incisions. The sling supports the urethra, restoring normal bladder control. The AdVance procedure is minimally invasive and is performed in an outpatient setting. Most people are continent immediately following the procedure and can resume normal, non-strenuous activities shortly after.
Dr. Cornell can help you determine which post-prostatectomy urinary incontinence treatment is best for your specific situation.
To learn more, contact our office or schedule an appointment online.