Orgasm after radical prostatectomy

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Abstract

Objective

To evaluate the ability to obtain and the quality of orgasm after radical prostatectomy.

Patients and methods

The orgasms experienced after undergoing radical prostatectomy were evaluated in 20 men (median age 65 years, range 56-76) using a semi-structured interview and a self-administered questionnaire. In addition, the patients were asked to write a brief statement about their experiences and sensations during orgasm before and after the operation.

Results

Eighteen patients returned the questionnaire and 17 completed a statement indicating what their orgasm was like before and after radical prostatectomy. After the operation, no patient was able to maintain a completely rigid erection, but for five patients the erection was sufficient for sexual intercourse. Nine patients used a vacuum device or intracavernosal self-injection. Half the patients reported diminished sexual desire (libido) and arousal after the operation and reported the same to occur in their partners. During their `dry' orgasm post-operatively, none of the patients experienced the exquisite sensation of inevitability, the so-called `point of no return'. Seven of the 14 patients experiencing orgasm complained that their orgasmic sensation was weakened. Four patients reported normal pleasure and sensation compared to that experienced pre-operatively. Surprisingly, nine of the 14 patients had involuntary loss of urine at orgasm; for five of them this was sufficient reason to avoid any sexual contact with their partner.

Conclusion

Radical prostatectomy may have serious consequences on libido and erectile function but sometimes other important factors, such as the absence of prostate and seminal vesicle contractions, the loss of ejaculation and involuntary loss of urine, may also compromise the orgasm.

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