Question: Inguinal hernia repair, urine retention and prostate

Posted , 8 users are following.

Hello all,

Looking for opinions and anyone that may have experienced what I have went through.

Let start from the beginning, Two years ago I had a inguinal hernia that I had repaired on my right side. it was done with an incision (cut at the site) I have a pretty bad case of anxiety. so it was very dramatic for me.

but here we are two years later and I now have the same kind of hernia on the left side. this time I decided to go with Laparoscopic instead of incision. before this particular repair I could pee and while it was not a strong stream it worked for me.  after the surgery I was told I could not leave until I peed. personally I didn't think that would be a problem as the last surgery I peed and went home. this time I could pee but it was very weak and very little but the nurses sent me home saying i was good. few hours later I realized while i could pee I wasn't fully emptying my bladder. later that evening i went to the ER worried and was told even after I went to the bathroom i was still holding 500+ml. I had a cath in for a few days. I was told to go to a urologist to have it removed after a few days and things would be back to normal. while waiting to get this thing out I did research online that with laparoscopic hernia repair there is a chance with patients having urine retention and all cases resolved in a few days.

when i showed to my urologist to get it removed she filled me up and took it out and had me pee and told me things are good. but mentioned that from the surgery the effect of urine retention could be from my prostate and requested to put me on Tamsulosin. she did an exam on my prostate and said it was alittle large. I am one that does not like meds. personally they make my anxiety even worse because I am scared of medications. Currently I only take one med and thats for for anxiety.

So I am home now  5 days later and peeing but taking this Tamsulosin and terrified from reading the side effects and afraid of them and if they could be permanent.

When I spoke to the urologist about my worries. she said we can discuss coming off of it in a month but thinks I should keep using it for the month. I just dont want my body to get dependent on it and then when i come off peeing may be worse. currently I think I am peeing as before but I dont know I am so damn hyper sensitive I cant remember what was normal. never really paid attention to myself peeing lol

My questions, 

1: has anyone experiences urine retention after a lap hernia repair and if so did they go to your prostate as the issue? 

I would like to know is of all the men that experienced this side effect after the surgery "urine retention" was it because of prostate or anesthesia? when I first had the issue of peeing after surgery I heard from many Dr's and nurses that it was quite common for this to happen and not to worry. but from the urologist she is thinking my prostate could be contributing to that hickup.

2: I keep reading online that you just cant go cold turkey on Tamsulosin. but on these forums It looks like people have. I have been on Tamsulosin for 4 days now and want off before I get to far into it if not needed. does anyone "from your experience" think 30 days would be to long to quite if she persists on me staying on it? I quite nervous taking this and any med.

3: I read in other posts here about men cathing themselves 4-6 times a day. even for years. wouldn't something like this cause damage over time and increase sensitivity to it?

I appreciate all replies and your time. 

Have a wonderful day!



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14 Replies

  • Posted

    I've had post-anaesthesia retention twice. First time was after eyelid surgery, second time was prostate biopsy. Tamsulosin was prescribed both times, but it caused retrograde ejaculation and postural hypotension (dizzy on standing up from seated). I'm now on Finasteride. I was never warned that it was bad to come off Tamsulosin 'cold turkey'. I had no ill - effects when I stopped the medication. I self-catheterise at night to have fewer toilet visits through the night, but daytime I pee normally.

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  • Posted

    If you want a med without side effects for retention ask your doctor to prescribe a diuretic. I have been on it for a year and it's great but you will have to drink a lot of liquids to prevent dehydration.

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  • Posted


    I have been taking Tamsulosin for 5 years now. The only side effect I have noticed are sinus congestion, light headedness, and temporary retrograde ejaculation.  In fact all the side effects are temporary for me and go away within a day after stopping.  When I am on the 0.4mg dose I can time it so the RE is there 4 hours after taking it until 12 hours after taking it.  So if you time it right it should not affect your sex life.  There is the problem of floppy iris which makes it difficult to do cataract surgery later in life.  You have to stop taking it 8 weeks in advance of the cataract surgery.  Hopefully by that time you have had a BPH procedure done so you don't have to take Tamsulosin,  or you can self catheterize for 8 weeks to get off it.



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  • Posted

    I had a hernia repair 4 years ago.  The surgeon did not suggest (or I do not remember him suggesting) a stool softener afterwards.  Although I took only 5 vicodins before switching to Tylenol, I become constipated.  I had been peeing normally but after 3 days of no bowel movement, the full colon shut off my urethra and I had to go to the ER.  I was cathed and given a colonoscopy prep to take it home.  That worked and I saw a urologist the next day who confirmed BPH that my family doctor had diagnosed and prescribed doxazosin for.  I removed the catheter 2 days later and all was fine after that.  I have had 2 unrelated surgeries requiring anesthesia since then and now take a stool softener for a couple days afterwards until I'm sure the plumbing is working correctly.  I suspect it was the vicodin rather than the anesthesia that caused my problem as constipation is a well known side-effect of opiods.

    FWIW, doxazosin doesn't have some of the side-effects of tamulosin (no RE or floppy iris) but all alpha-blockers lower blood pressure a little which is why they relax the prostate.  I went off it for a while and my doctor also recommended tapering off (first halve the dose for a few days, then take the half dose every other day for a few days.)  I think that's typical for lots of meds.  

    From you post, it sounds like your medication anxiety may be as big a problem for you as any potential side effects of the medication itself.  That my be something you'll want to address.

    Good luck.


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    • Posted

      Hi Lee- just a little suggestion. Next time you get constipated, try using a Fleet enema [saline solution.] Within 2 minutes or so your constipation problem will be solved. And of course use it on day 1 of constipation... never wait 3 days..! Cheers- J
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  • Posted

    Thanks for the replies!

    My only wonder is why when I went to the urologist to have the cath. removed she went right to my prostate being a possible problem without any examination and wanting to start me on meds.?

    I am always weary of Dr's that want to prescribe meds. I feel sometimes they are to fast to hand the stuff out.

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    • Posted

      When I went to the ER for my post-hernia surgery retention, the ER doc (without examining me), gave me a prescription for finasteride!  I think they all assume if you're in retention, it must be a prostate problem.  In my (non-medical) opinion, a doctor shouldn't prescribe prostate medication without a prostate exam.  At the very least a DRE and an ultrasound of the bladder plus getting your IPSS.  And you are right, some doctors' first inclination is to prescribe a drug.  My wife and I once switched family doctors because of that.

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    • Posted

      At least you can stop talking meds. Surgeries in most cases are irreversible. The 2 uros I saw suggested surgeries without any exams or tests. Hank
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  • Posted

    I had a double Laparoscopic inguinal hernia repair 1 month ago. In and out of the hospital within 3 hours. Absolutely no issues. Was on pain meds for only one day. No issues with urination. Three weeks following I was playing golf.
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