A lot of men ask us what their sex life will be like after prostate cancer treatment.

Will I be able to have sex after treatment for prostate cancer?
In reality, the answer to this is different for every man and depends on what treatment you’ve had, whether you’re feeling up to it, and whether you’ve hadany sexual problems in the past. It is common for men to have difficulty getting an erection but this can improve with time and treatment. Many men will be able to have sex again but it is likely to be quite different. Remember, you can have orgasms without having an erection or ejaculating. And sex doesn’t have to be about penetration. You could try different things like massage, mutual masturbation, oral sex, vibrators or dildos. And you can get treatment on the NHS to help with erections – like tablets or a vacuum pump.

Will sex feel different after treatment?
Yes, sex can feel quite different. You’ll still have feeling in your penis and you should be able to have an orgasm but it may not feel the same. If you’ve had surgery you won’t ejaculate when you orgasm, but you will still get the feeling of an orgasm. If you’ve had other treatments, including hormone therapy, you may notice that you produce less semen and your sexual desire may not be the same. Again, you should still be able to have an orgasm but it may feel
different.

Do the treatments for erection problems actually work?
There are a number of different treatments for erection problems, such as tablets, pellets, injections, pumps and implants and different treatments will work for different men. These are not always a ‘quick fix’, and you often have to stick with them or try different ones to see what works best for you. Research shows that men who try more treatments are more likely to find one that works. For some treatments you need to have a desire for sex (libido) but others, like pumps, injections and pellets will work without this.

Why is hormone therapy affecting the way I feel about sex?
Hormone therapy reduces or blocks the effect of the testosterone that gives you your sex drive. Not having a sex drive may make you feel less confident about your masculinity and physical changes such as putting on weight, hot flushes or breast swelling, may have the same effect. There are ways to tackle this. Try focusing on the things you like about yourself, do activities you are good at, or try something new.