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Maximizing Early Recovery of Sexual Function*

Sexual Function Chart

*These results are from a select group of patients and vary based on pre-operative function

When faced with a prostate cancer diagnosis, first thoughts are usually focused on removing the cancer, but the ability to resume intimacy is another important issue. The possibility of impotence is a valid concern, as the nerves responsible for proper erectile function are small, fragile and attached to the prostate, making them difficult to protect from damage.

One of the clear advantages of robotic surgery in the hands of an experienced surgeon over conventional open or laparoscopic surgery is in the preservation of these delicate nerves and the ability to regain early sexual function.

Our expertise has led us to a few important conclusions:

  • Surgeon experience and surgical technique is directly correlated with potency outcomes
  • Trauma to the neurovascular bundle can result in impotence, this is minimized in the hands of those with significant experience
  • The ability to preserve nerves is dependent upon the cancer and on the surgeon’s experience and assessment during surgery
  • Our signature technique of releasing the nerves in a retrograde manner prior to mobilizing the patient has been shown to facilitate the early return of sexual function

Over 90 percent of our patients with normal function going into surgery who have full bilateral nerve preservation regain sexual function. Our approach to nerve preservation by eliminating the use of thermal energy around the nerves, while releasing the nerves away from the prostate early in the surgery in a retrograde manner with minimal traction or trauma, has contributed to our success. Potency recovery periods are variable in each patient.