WHAT IS A URETHROPLASTY?
Urethroplasty is a surgery where the urethra is reconstructed to cure problems like urethral strictures. The types of surgeries are varied and depend upon the location, cause, and length of the stricture. Most surgeries take between three to six hours to complete.
An incision is made over the area of the stricture in the penis, scrotum, or perineum (the area between the scrotum and the anus). After surgery, a urethral catheter is left in for two to four weeks depending upon the type of surgery that was performed. When patients return to clinic the bladder is filled with x-ray contrast and the catheter is gently removed.
While x-rays are being taken, the patient voids and the area of the surgery is evaluated. If the area of surgery is healed, then the catheter is left out and patients begin to void normally.
HOW LONG WILL RECOVERY TAKE?
Recovery time depends a lot on the type of surgery that was performed. Typical patients will be in the hospital overnight after surgery. As soon as they can eat, walk, and care for their catheter they can leave the hospital. It is important to limit activities after urethroplasty until adequate healing has occurred. This means no heavy lifting, strenuous exercise, or work for at least two weeks.
Generally, it is best if patients do not work while the catheter is in place, however, patients can start doing work that is not physical after 10–14 days. The catheter can be worn draining to a smaller bag that straps to the lower leg under a pair of pants. Wearing a catheter like this is unobtrusive and very manageable.