Brachytherapy: Post-Operative Instructions
- You may resume normal activity as soon as you are comfortable. If you received intravenous sedation, wait 24 hours until you undertake normal activities.
- Some burning on urination is expected. Occasionally some blood will be seen in the urine.
- There are no dietary or alcohol restrictions unless you have received sedation. In that case, do not consume alcohol for 24 hours.
- Discomfort in the perineum, as well as discoloration and some swelling, is expected. Occasionally, the discoloration will extend onto the shaft of the penis.
- For the first 24 hours after the implant apply an ice pack to the perineum, for 20 minutes of each waking hour. You need not purchase a special ice bag. A plastic bag containing ice, wrapped in a towel will suffice.
- You will be provided with prescriptions for an antibiotic and a pain medicine. Unless otherwise advised, finish the antibiotic. You should use the pain medication as needed. In many instances, your doctor will advise you on the use of a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication (ibuprofen or naproxen) to help decrease the inflammation caused by the implant. Stay on a stool softener for at least 2-3 weeks following the procedure.
- You should already have a prescription for an alpha blocker (Flomax, Rapaflo or Uroxatral). Do not stop this medication unless instructed otherwise. In some instances, you will be advised to increase the dosage for a short while.
- On the day of the implant eat lightly. Avoid alcohol for 24 hours after the procedure.
- In most cases, normal activity can be resumed in 24-48 hours after the implant.
- If you are discharged with a urinary catheter, the recovery room nurses will instruct you on the timing and means of its removal.
- Burning on urination, rectal irritation, as well as urinary frequency and urgency are the rule, rather than the exception after the implant. The resolution of these symptoms usually occurs over a few months. In most instances, steady improvement will be noted.
- You should have received an appointment with your Urologist for 2 weeks following the procedure. You should see the Radiation Oncologist in 1 month.
If you are experiencing an emergency that cannot be accommodated by an office visit the same or the next business day in either of our locations, please dial 911 or go to your nearest or favorite emergency room and ensure that Dr. Engel or Dr. Tobon are contacted to take part in your care. As a reminder, USW physicians have privileges at Reston Hospital Center, Holy Cross Hospital Silver Spring, and Holy Cross Hospital Germantown.