Email this page
Printable Format
Home > FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions
 
Top 5 Frequently Asked Questions
 
Frequently Asked Questions - Organized By Category

 

Q. How can I get my prescriptions refilled?
A. Contact your pharmacy and they will contact our office. State regulations require that a patient is seen by their physician on an annual basis to renew prescriptions. If it has been over a year since your last office visit and you need a prescription refill, please make an appointment with your doctor.


Q. I have a Foley catheter and it leaks. Is this normal?

A. It is normal to have leakage of urine around a catheter. This is usually related to bladder spasms and represents a benign condition. If your foley bag stops filling with urine and you experience worsening pelvic pain, please call your physician.  


Q. When do I receive my test results?
A. This can vary due to the type of test and the availability of the physician for call back. Some tests need to be sent out of the state for analysis and others require multiple doctors to read. Your doctor will get back to you as soon as the results are available. If you do not hear anything by one week, please call our nursing line. 

 

Q. When should I call the Doctor?

  • Temperature over 102 F
  • Prolonged vomiting
  • Worsening pain, new pain or pain not controlled with pills
  • Dizziness and faintness
  • Bleeding requiring dressing change

Q. What are bladder spasms?

  • These are strong urges to void that can be painful. They are a reaction to surgery or having a foley catheter.
  • There are some medications that help relieve them, but most pass on their own. They do not cause any harm.

FAQs

General Questions

Q. How many procedures has my Dr. done (particularly robotics)
A. Each year, our physicians perform over:

  • 300 prostate surgeries (majority with Robotics)
  • 800 vasectomies
  • 1000 stone lithotripsies
  • 80 nephrectomies
  • Numerous other procedures

Q. Will my insurance cover this?
A. Nearly all of our procedures and office visits are covered by insurers. Specific questions need to addressed to your insurance company.

Q. Who fills out my disability paperwork?
A. We have staff to help your complete the forms.

Q. Who can I call with questions about surgery?
A. Most questions can be answered by searching our website. Specific questions should be directed to your Doctor at the time of the office visit.

Q. Will my surgeon get mad if I get a second opinion? How can I get my records to another doctor for the second opinion?
A. Second opinions are encouraged by all of our Doctors. We realize the importance of gathering information from many sources. Call our medical records department to get copies of your records. A signed authorization form is required.

Q. Who do I call if I have issues with my Doctor, nurse or other staff?
A. While our staff strives to satisfy all of our patients’ concerns, we know problems can occur. Please contact our office manager with this feedback.

All Surgeries

Q. When can I return to work?

A. Most abdominal surgeries require 4-6 weeks to recover from. Laparoscopic procedures can shorten this to 3 weeks. Endoscopic or cysto cases usually only require less than one week off work.


Q. Will I stay overnight / expected hospitalization?

A. The majority of urologic surgeries are performed on a same day surgery basis where the patient goes home the same day. Abdominal surgeries for cancer usually require admission to the hospital for 1-7 days.

 

Q. Will I have much pain, how will this be controlled?

A. We are very aggressive in treating and avoiding pain. Our patients are kept as comfortable as possible at all times.

 

Q. What are my activity restrictions and when can I resume: exercise, tennis, golf, swimming, sexual activity, driving, biking?

A. Most abdominal surgeries require 4-6 weeks to recover from. Laparoscopic procedures can shorten this to 3 weeks. Endoscopic or cysto cases usually require less than one week off.

 

Q. Can I take a shower / bath?

A. It is usually fine to shower, or splash bath 1-2 days after surgery. Full baths should wait for one week.

 

Q. Any diet restrictions?

A. After surgery, it is most important to drink liquids and soups. Avoid heavy and rich foods for a few days after leaving the hospital.

 

Q. When can I restart anticoagulants: ASA, Coumadin / Warfarin, Plavix?

A. Most of the time, these can be resumed 2 weeks after surgery.

 

Q. When should I call the Doctor?

  • Temperature over 102 F
  • Prolonged vomiting
  • Worsening pain, new pain or pain not controlled with pills
  • Dizziness and faintness
  • Bleeding requiring dressing changes

Q. How do I treat constipation issues?

  • Most pain medicines cause constipation. A daily fiber supplement (Colace Metamucil) should be taken.
  • If the stool softeners fail, milk of magnesia or Ducolaax suppositories can be used.
  • If there is no bowel movement five days after going home, call your physician.

Q. What are bladder spasms?
A. These are strong urges to void that can be painful. They are a reaction to surgery or having a foley catheter. There are some medications that help relieve them, but most pass on their own. They do not cause any harm.


Q. When can I take my TEDs off?
A. Once you are comfortably walking and leaving your home.

 

Q. Can I restart my home medications?
A. All medications are resumed except ones that can cause bleeding such as Plavix, Aspirin, Coumadin.

 

Q. When can my dressing be removed?
A. Dressings can be removed two days after surgery. Sometimes, small tapes hold an incision together. These steri-strips stay on for 2 weeks.

 

Q. How do I get my results, and will they be sent to my primary Doctor?
A. Lab and test results take up to a week to obtain. If it takes longer than this, our office can be contacted. All results are forwarded to your primary Doctor.

 

Q. When do I follow up?
A. Staples are removed one week after surgery and foley catheters 1-2 weeks after surgery. Typical post operative follow-up is 3-4 weeks.

Q. Where can I get medical supplies?
A. At local pharmacies.

 

Q. When does the swelling go down?
A. Swelling can takes weeks to resolve, but always does.

 

Q. Is it normal to have blood in my urine and when will it stop?
A. Blood in the urine is normal after many prostate procedures. A small drop turns the urine red and does not pose a problem.

 

Q. What color of urine should I get worried about and call?
A. Blood clots can block the flow of urine and cause pain. This warrants a phone call.

TURBT / TURP, Greenlight Laser

Q. How long will I have blood in my urine
A. Up to 2 weeks.

 

Q. Should I stay on my BPH medications?
A. Usually not. Some medications, such as Hytrin (terazosin) and Cardura (doxazosin) should be continued because they also treat high blood pressure.

 

Q. Will I need a catheter?
A. Most patients do not go home with a catheter.

 

Q. When can I drive?
A. 24 hours after surgery or after the catheter is removed.

 

Q. When will I get the pathology report?
A. Greenlight laser procedures do not have a pathology report. Reports are available one week after surgery.

 

Q. Will it hurt to urinate, if yes, how long?
A. Burning with urination is common and resolves a bit more every day.

Prostatectomy and Robotic Prostatectomy

Q. How long will I have the catheter?
A. Usually 10-14 days after surgery.
 

Q. When do I get the pathology report?
A. These reports are usually available 3-5 days after surgery.

 

Q. Any lifting / activity restrictions?
A. No heavy lifting for 6 weeks. Using stairs and lifting light items is fine immediately after surgery.

 

Q. When should I start Kegal exercises?
A. These should be started before surgery and continued once the catheter is removed.

  

Q. If I have incontinence how long will it last?
A. Some patients are dry within a few weeks and others take a couple of months.

 

Q. Why do I have abdominal cramping?
A. This is especially common after robotic surgery about 2-4 days after the procedure. It always resolves as normal bowel function returns. Be sure to take stool softeners and eat small, frequent meals.

 

Q. What should I do about constipation?

  • Most pain medicines cause constipation. A daily fiber supplement (Colace Metamucil) should be taken.
  • If the stool softeners fail, milk of magnesia or Ducolaax suppositories can be used.
  • If there is no bowel movement five days after going home, call your physician.
Cystectomies

 

Q. Is it OK if the ureteral stents fall out?
A. Normally this is not a problem at all. 
 
Nephrostomy (Kidney) Tubes

 

Q. What do I do if I have new flank pain?
A. Open nephrostomy tubes if having pain. 
 
Prostate Biopsies

 
Q. What are the side effects from prostate biopsies?
A. It is normal to have blood in the stool, the urine and the ejaculate for up to a week after a biopsy.

 

Q. When to restart anticoagulants?
A. These medicines, including aspirin, can be restarted in one week.

 

Q. When will you get my results, how do I get my results.
A. Your Doctor will call you with the results in 3-4 business days. If you do not hear from us in a week, please call.

 

Q. What is the follow-up?
A. If a prostate biopsy is negative, a PSA will often be repeated in 3-6 months. 
 
Vasectomies
 

Q. What does “scapleless” mean?
A. The skin is spread apart, rather than cut. This results in a small opening that heals faster.

 
Q. Can this be done in the hospital?
A. All procedures can be done in the hospital, but 99% of the time the Vasectomy is done in the office.   

 

Q. How long does it take?
A. 20-30 minutes to do the procedure, but there is also a short set up and recovery time.

 

Q. How long to be off work?
A. Usually 1-2 days after the procedure.

 

Q. Activity restrictions
A. No heavy lifting or strenuous exercise for one week.

 

Q. How long to ice it
A. 20 minutes with ice, then 20 minutes without ice. Do this for the day of the procedure.

 

Q. How to manage pain / discomfort
A. Tylenol is usually enough. If that doesn’t work, 600mg of Ibuprofen will often work.

 

Q. When to bring in semen sample? Should it be refrigerated?
A. Three months after the vasectomy. This does not need to be refrigerated. Please call our

      office the day before you are bringing in the sample to let us know you are coming.

 

Q. When can I resume sexual activity?
A. Two weeks. 
 
Office Cystoscopies (Looking into the bladder)
 

Q. What does it feel like?
A. Numbing jelly is used to make the procedure more comfortable. There is a “pinch” feeling as the scope passes into the urethra. The exam takes less than 30 seconds.

 

Q. Is the nurse present?
A. There will always be a nurse present.

 

Q. Is it necessary?
A. There is no other way to look for bladder tumors.

 

Q. How long will I have blood / irritation afterward?
A. Blood and burning with urination will quickly resolve in less than a day. 
 
Stent Symptoms
 

Q. Why do I have a stent?
A. A stent is placed due to obstruction of urine flow from a stone, tumor or inflammation. It bypasses the obstruction.

 

Q. What does a stent feel like?
A. It can tickle the bladder, causing the sensation of needing to urinate. During urination discomfort can be felt in the kidney. It also can cause blood in the urine. All of these are normal stent symptoms.

 

Q. How do you get it out?
A. It is removed by office cystoscopy (see above).
 
Foley Catheter
 

Q. What does a catheter feel like?
A. It can cause discomfort in the rectum and at the tip of the urethra.

 

Q. What are bladder spasms?
A. These are sudden strong urges to void that can be painful. They do not hurt the bladder or adversely affect the outcome from surgery. They can cause urine to spurt around the catheter.

 

Q. Will it cause bleeding?
A. Some blood around the catheter is normal

 

Q. When should I call my Doctor?
A. Call if urgency is persistent and there has not been any drainage from the catheter for 2-3 hours.

 

Q. What can I do if it hurts to sit?
A. Take 600mg of ibuprofen if you do not have any stomach problems. 
 
Stone Prevention

 

Q. What can I do to prevent kidney stones?
A. For calcium based stones, a person should increase their fluid intake, and decrease salt and red meats. Fluid intake should total 2-3 liters (quarts) per day.

  

Q. Can I still take calcium?
A. Yes.