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Surgical removal of all or part of the bladder is known as cystectomy. Sometimes if you suffer from bladder problems, the bladder is removed in a procedure called a Cystectomy. This procedure takes away the bladder but leaves behind some of the urethra - the small tube that urine passes through. A new bladder or 'neobladder' is then made out of a small section of the bowel and attached to the urethra and ureters (the tubes that drain urine from the kidneys).
Total Cystectomy or Radical Cystectomy
Total Cystectomy is also known as Radical Cystectomy and refers to the surgical removal of the entire bladder, nearby lymph nodes (lymphadenectomy), part of the urethra, and nearby organs. This is usually perfromed in the case of bladder cancer because other pelvic organs may too have been invaded by the cancer cells.
In men, the nearby organs that are removed are the prostate, the seminal vesicles, and part of the vas deferens.
In women, the cervix, the uterus, the ovaries, the fallopian tubes, and part of the vagina are also removed. The ureters are disconnected from the bladder and a urinary diversion is created.
Cystectomy Surgery Recovery
The best way to combat incontinence after Cystectomy surgery is to strengthen your pelvic floor before and after your operation.
Before your operation, you can use one of our market-leading Kegel8 Ultra 20 pelvic toners to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, improve circulation in the pelvic area and improve your recovery time.
After your operation, you should not carry out pelvic floor exercises (even manual Kegels) until your consultant says that it's safe to do so - Cystectomy surgery is major surgery and you need to give your body a chance to heal.
When it's safe to do so start with manual Kegel exercises to begin your pelvic floor's recovery process. Remember to do both 'fast' Kegels and 'slow' Kegels to work both the fast and slow twitch muscle fibres in your pelvic floor. (Read about how to do the most effective manual Kegel exercises to work both types of muscle fibres in our article here).
The slow twitch muscle fibres are the ones that work constantly to help you to retain urine and support your pelvic muscles. The fast twitch muscle fibres act almost like a 'tap' - they react quickly when you sneeze and cough, and they also work to shut off the flow of urine and help to prevent accidents - so after your Cystectomy procedure it's very important to work both types of muscles to give yourself the best chance of recovery. While manual Kegels are great, they only work around 40% of your pelvic floor muscles, whereas a Kegel8 works 90% of your muscles, so Kegel8 really helps to make a positive difference to your pelvic floor.
- What happens after a Cystectomy: Neobladder Surgery - The Importance of Kegel Exercise
- Read all about Bladder weakness
- Find out more about Pelvic Floor Surgery
- See Kegel8 Pelvic Toners on ITV's This Morning Programme