Day of admission
The day of your admission as an inpatient mainly involves the ward doctor performing a few remaining tests required for surgery and making preparations for your procedure. This includes:
- Blood samples
- A conversation about the surgery, answering any questions you have
- Physical examination
- Ultrasound scans
- Any further tests required due to pre-existing conditions or findings, such as X-rays
You will also have a detailed conversation with the anaesthetist about the anaesthetic used during surgery. Finally, the nursing staff will show you around the ward and your room, and tell you about nursing procedures during your stay. If you wish, you can speak with our psycho-oncologists. For organisational reasons, these processes might happen in a different order on the day you are admitted. Your surgeon will also visit you in the course of the day to discuss the planned procedure.
Your contact person
Your questions are welcome
Day of surgery
On the day of your surgery, the nursing staff on your ward will help to get you ready before bringing you to the operating room. We’ll take care of everything. You will have to fast for several hours before the operation, so you will not be able to eat, drink or smoke. The anaesthetists and nurses will inform you of the exact times of your fast. After the surgery, you will only be taken back to your room once the anaesthetic has almost completely worn off, which means it could be late afternoon or evening by the time you return. You can drink fluids after the surgery. Please speak to the team on your ward about when you can and wish to eat. You will be given infusions over the course of the day via an IV line to make sure your body gets the fluids it needs. You will also be given pain relief medication to minimise any wound pain. Later in the evening, your surgeon will visit you to let you know how the surgery went.
Post-surgery strengthening exercises
The Physiotherapy team at UKE have produced videos to assist with your mobilisation after surgery. You can watch these videos from your bed during your stay, either on your bedside terminal or on your mobile device.
Day 2 post-surgery: Back on your feet
You should get up and about more often today to stimulate blood flow and take walks around the ward. All the same, we still recommend taking regular breaks to rest. If the surgical drains we mentioned earlier are no longer producing much secretion, these can also be removed today. However, the urinary catheter will remain in place in the bladder for a while longer. Your family and friends can now visit you in the Martini-Klinik at any time.
From day 3 post-surgery: A rapid return to normality
You will soon find yourself feeling significantly better every day and can slowly start becoming more mobile.
It usually takes several days for the sutured connection between the urethra and the bladder (anastomosis) to heal properly. Until then, the catheter inserted during surgery has to remain in place. How fast the anastomosis heals differs considerably from patient to patient, depending on a number of factors. Patients are often discharged with the catheter in place. In our many years of experience, returning home with the catheter in place does not cause any problems, as you will have become familiar with how to handle it during your inpatient stay with us. Your surgeon will personally explain to you how to use the catheter during your stay. If your catheter needs to be removed after your inpatient stay, we will make an outpatient appointment for this before discharging you. Of course, you can also have the catheter removed by your usual urologist, which might be a prudent option if you have travelled a long way to our clinic.
A final conversation with the surgeon
Between the 4th and 6th days after surgery, patients have usually recovered to the point that they can leave the house. As soon as we have the final results of the histological examination (of the tissue removed during surgery), we will inform you of the results and explain it to you. Please note that the final histological results will not be available by the time you are discharged. The histological examination, which is conducted in the Pathology department at UKE, is extensive and takes more time. However, it provides very solid results and allows us to provide a reliable prognosis for your illness.
Before you are scheduled to be discharged, our doctors and nurses will hold a final conversation with you to give you another opportunity to ask any questions and clear up anything you are unsure about. Please take the time during your stay to read the section about plans for your treatment moving forward, which is in the discharge documentation you will be given during your stay.