Physiotherapy & Prostate Surgery

After prostatectomy men usually need to purposely use their pelvic floor muscles to control their bladder. It is easier to learn how to use the muscles before having the surgery - knowing where they are and how to use them correctly will assist with your recovery.


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It is advised that men undergoing a radical prostatectomy should see a physiotherapist at least 6-8 weeks prior to surgery and again afterwards to learn about their pelvic floor and get it working well again after surgery. Some degree of incontinence is expected after surgery as there can be removal of or damage to the urinary sphincters and pelvic floor muscles.

Pelvic floor exercises before prostate surgery

Boost your confidence to learn how to exercise your pelvic floor and give you something to focus on during the wait for surgery. There are a few ways men can correctly identify the correct muscles:

  • Stopping the flow of your wee midway through emptying your bladder
  • Visualising the penis draw in and scrotum lift up using a mirror

Your lower tummy may flatten slightly but everything above the belly button must stay relaxed, keep breathing.

Pelvic floor pain after prostatectomy

It is important you do not perform pelvic floor exercises while your catheter is in place after surgery as it can irritate the bladder. If your pelvic floor is tense or tight after surgery it may become painful. A degree of pain after surgery is to be expected – speak with your surgeon about post operative pain relief.

Getting back into shape after prostatectomy

Performing pelvic floor exercises before and after surgery is vital to your recovery as these muscles help you control your bladder and bowel. To return to normal activity, you will need to be sensible and follow a graduated exercise program. This can be guided by your surgeon and/or physio, walking is a good place to start. Often men get leakage when returning to higher intensity exercise and so may require more work on their pelvic floor before they can reach their activity goals.