Prostate Cancer and the Male Pelvic Floor

The Border Mail, an Australian newspaper, published an article today following Brian Costello, a man who underwent a prostatectomy.? Surgery for prostate cancer often leaves patients suffering with erectile dysfunction and incontinence.? However, Brian?s physicians did not send him into outpatient rehab, leaving him and his wife Jill, ?on their own.?

The piece titled ?Sex and Secret Men?s Business,? outlines how important pelvic floor and penile rehabilitation is, as well as how few hospitals are prepared to treat outpatients who survive prostate cancer.

Brian?s wife and daughter Leah started ManUp!, an advocacy organization meant to promote better prostate care in Australia.? All too often they hear stories like Brian?s; physicians who show ?no interest in what happens to their patients after prostate cancer treatment.? One man left impotent and incontinent after his robotic surgery[, and] was told the doctor?s job was simply to deal with the cancer.?

One of the many reasons that erectile dysfunction and incontinence are under-serviced conditions though is that patients frequently do not bring it up: ?it?s hard for busy practitioners to keep up to date with the recently developed erection treatments.? It?s also a two-way street, with some men finding it difficult to talk about these issues,? says Prem Rashid, a urologist and associate professor at the University of NSW.? ?Issues surrounding erectile dysfunction following prostate cancer treatment are complex and multi-factorial and often require the help of a multidisciplinary team,? - a team in which pelvic PTs play an important role.

Herman & Wallace will be offering a course on The Male Pelvic Floor in Minneapolis this September.? Participants in this two-day course will learn how to treat conditions such as sexual dysfunction, pelvic pain, and incontinence.

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