So a week after the surgery I had the usual problems that guys seem to have with catheters but that nobody bothers to tell you about.
Being woken up during the night when erections meant that my penis simultaneously tried to pull out the catheter and scraped it over the inside of my urethra was a new experience, and one I could have happily done without. After a couple of days I learned to tape the catheter into a position that minimised the unpleasantness.
I think that night-time erections were a particular problem for me because my penis changes a lot in size between flaccid and erect. So an erection meant pulling an extra 10 cm or so of catheter over my wounded urethra. It was also a latex catheter and they seem to be stickier than the other types.
During the week with the catheter I worked from home and tried to avoid walking around too much. I never did find a position for the tubing that didn’t become uncomfortable while walking.
Having the catheter removed was very easy, although slightly delayed by a massive failure of the county’s healthcare IT system that morning. The nurse deflated the balloon and pulled it out smoothly, all I felt was a slightly odd sensation and it was done.
I went straight back to work afterwards and discovered that the catheter had left my prostate a bit tender, so I needed to use a soft cushion on my office chair.
A few days later I started feeling like I had flu or something. Several colds and flus were going around the office at the time but my husband insisted I go to the emergency room and it turned out I had a fairly severe urinary tract infection. By the time I was admitted to the urology ward, around midnight, I was sweating profusely and feeling pretty grim.
They kept me in the hospital for three days while the antibiotics started to take effect. When I was discharged I had a meeting with the doctor who’d done the urethrotomy. I was a bit concerned that I hadn’t had any night-time erections for a few days (which was probably just due to being really ill) but he just casually said that it could be a complication of the surgery and made a weird comment about the next step being anastomosis and that that would likely cause shortening of the penis. It was an odd thing to say both because anastomosis isn’t at all a suitable surgery for strictures in the penile urethra and because it had nothing to do with the question I’d asked.
After a week of recovery I could concentrate for long enough to go back to work, although the infection had settled in my prostate and needed another couple of weeks of antibiotics to be completely rid of it.