Post-RARP Weight Gain May Worsen Urinary Incontinence

SAN DIEGO—Normal-weight men who undergo robotic-assisted radical prostatectomy (RARP) may experience slower recovery of urinary continence after surgery if they gain weight, researchers reported at the American Urological Association annual meeting.

Jacob E. Boone, MD, and colleagues at Southern California Permanente Medical Group in Los Angeles, studied 180 patients who underwent RARP. Of these, 33 were normal-weight patients (body mass index [BMI] less than 25 kg/m2), 99 were overweight (BMI 25-29.9), and 63 were obese (BMI greater than 30). The median age of the cohort was 63 years. Dr. Boone's group found an inverse relationship between change in BMI and the degree of decline in urinary incontinence score from baseline baseline to six months after surgery, but this relationship was significant only in the normal-weight group.

Patients may gain weight after surgery, Dr. Boone noted, perhaps because they are not exercising as much as they used to or they are eating differently. Especially if patients are normal weight, “it's important to counsel those patients that if they do gain weight they may have worse urinary incontinence,” Dr. Boone told Renal & Urology News. Strenuous exercise is not recommended right after surgery, he said, but patients should be advised to exercise as soon as they heal from surgery and to watch their diet.

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