Orchiectomy

ExitCare ImageAn orchiectomy is the removal of the testicles. It is most often done to treat cancer of the prostate. It is also done to treat cancer of the testicles. The testicles can be replaced with artificial testicles.

LET YOUR HEALTH CARE PROVIDER KNOW ABOUT:

  • Any allergies you have.

  • All medicines you are taking, including vitamins, herbs, eye drops, creams, and over-the-counter medicines.

  • Previous problems you or members of your family have had with the use of anesthetics.

  • Any blood disorders you have.

  • Previous surgeries you have had.

  • Medical conditions you have.

RISKS AND COMPLICATIONS

Generally, orchiectomy is a safe procedure. However, as with any procedure, complications can occur. Possible complications include:

  • Infection of the surgical site.

  • Bleeding inside the the sac that holds your testicles (scrotum). This is called a scrotal hematoma.

  • Discharge from the surgical site.

BEFORE THE PROCEDURE

  • You may be asked to wash your genital area with sterile soap the morning of your procedure.

  • You may be given an oral antibiotic, which you should take with a sip of water as prescribed by your physician.

  • You will generally not be allowed to eat or drink for the previous 8 hours prior to your surgery.

PROCEDURE

This surgery is done with the use of a local anesthetic. Sometimes a general anesthetic or light sedation may be used and you may be sleeping during the procedure. If your procedure is indicated for treatment of prostate cancer, the incision will be in the scrotum. If your procedure is for testicular cancer, the incision will be in the groin. After the removal, the incision will be closed. A sterile dressing will be applied to the incision site. You may have a scrotal support. This elevates the scrotum, thereby relieving pressure on the surgical site.

AFTER THE PROCEDURE

After the procedure, you will be taken to the recovery area, where a nurse will watch you and check your progress. Once you are awake, stable, and taking fluids well, without other problems, you will be allowed to go home. In those cases where your scrotal support irritates your incision site, you may remove the support. It is okay if the dressing comes off, especially at night. Air will help a scab to form, which will eliminate the need for dressings during the day.