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inability to urinate after prostate biopsy
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inability to urinate after prostate biopsy

my 72 year old dad went in for a prostate biopsy and was released from hospital same day but without having urinated after the procedure.  once home he was yet unable to urinate.  a visit to the er resulted in admission and he was informed that he probably had a blood clot in urethra. he has been catheratized and decatherized 5 times in the past days. bladder irrigation was useful in making urine appear normal but after the last decatherization he is yet unable to urinate. What caused all this in the first place? could the bladder have been accidentally punctured during biopsy? if there is a blood clot in the urethra why hasn't bladder irrigation helped and why is he unable to urinate without catheter? what are possible treatment methods for this and is this type of complication common after a prostate biopsy? I am thousands, though at his moment it seems like millions of miles removed from my dad and can't get the answers I need. Please provide as much info as possible. thanks
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Dear Miriam,
One of the potential side effects of a prostate biopsy is the inability to urinate afterwards.  This is referred to as urinary retention.  It is not very common after prostate biopsy,  but it does happen from time to time.  As men age they tend to become prone to urinary retention due to an enlarged prostate and a less effective bladder, among others.  When the prostate gets irritated from the biopsy the patient can potentially go in retention.  In such circumstances the patient will require to be catheterized  with catheter left in for a few days.  At the same time the patient may be started on some medications that help prevent urinary retention.  The most common ones used are: Cardura, Hytrin and Flomax.  If after the catheter is removed several days later, he still can not urinate, he may be started on a course of self catheterization, on a 3 to 4 times per day basis.
As far as the clot in the urethra as the cause of the problem, it is not likely in this particular case.
Additionally, it is highly unlikely that the bladder was punctured during the biopsy, and even if it had urinary retention would be not likely to ensue.  You should talk to you father's urologist about this problem.

This information is provided for general medical educational purposes only.  Please consult your physician for diagnostic and treatment options pertaining to your specific medical condition.  More individualized care is available at the Henry Ford Hospital and its satellites (1 800 653-6568).

Sincerely,
HFHS M.D.-BE
*keyword: retention after TRUS
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