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Following a positive PSA test for prostate cancer, many men opt to have the gland completely removed. However, a new study from a team of German researchers shows that the majority of surgery patients feel worse after the procedure than they did before.
Researchers from St. Antonius Hospital in Germany surveyed 263 men who had their prostate removed and found that more than 50 percent said that the procedure had reduced their quality of life.
One of the main reasons for the dissatisfaction was the fact that after one year, only 26 percent had recovered their full sexual function. Impotency has been shown to take a major toll on men's mental health and may contribute to an overall reduction in quality of life.
The researchers said that providing more men with pre-operative psychiatric counseling may help many patients avoid the mental dissatisfaction that often accompanies prostate removal surgery.
"It's not just about recovery of the penis and its ability to become erect, but helping men come to terms with being a cancer survivor," Mark Litwin, who led the study, told Reuters.
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