I had DaVinci surgery just over two weeks ago, and my experience so far has been excellent.
You're already doing what you need to do before the surgery - get information, talk to people that have been through it, read as much as you can. You've found a great forum for getting good information. And as you can see, having a positive attitude, as well as a sense of humor and a concern for health and well-being is 95% of what you need.
My surgery was scheduled for about
11:00 a.m. on a Friday. I was discharged around 3:00 p.m. the next day. I had started walking the halls on Saturday. I even walked down to the hospital entrance when I was discharged - declined to ride in a wheel chair. I had very little pain - took pills after getting home for just two days, and that was mainly for pain when I coughed ( they encourage you to cough to help your lungs recover from the anesthesia).
I agree with previous posts that it's helpful to have a recliner or other comfortable chair with an ottoman or something to rest your feet on. The doctor with advise that after the surgery, your husband should avoid sitting upright and putting weight on the perineal area. I didn't sleep in the chair overnight like others say they did, but it was where I spent most of my time during the day.
The catheter is what most guys, including myself, seem to dread the most. The thought of a tube hanging out of a place that I regard with reverence was revolting. ..;) But I have to say that it wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. And it's not as complicated to take care of as you might think. At the hospital, before discharge, one of the nurses made sure that I knew everything I needed to know and gave me all the supplies necessary. My wife's cousin (whose husband had the same surgery a few months ago) even volunteered to come over and administer her own loving catheter care
I was able to sleep on my back most of the night, with the big bag resting in a plastic pail we use as a waste basket. I'd keep the big bag attached until after I showered in the morning, then I'd switch to the leg bag. Thigh straps with velcro were provided at the hospital to keep the catheter tube secured to the thigh ( to support the weight of the catheter and prevent tugging on the tip of the penis). Make sure they give you two thigh straps. That way, your husband can keep one on as he showers, and he'll have a dry strap to use with the leg bag when he dresses.
I bought a pair of baggy pants on clearance, anticipating that I'd be walking in my neighborhood with a leg bag attached to the catheter. I started walking - short walks at first - the day after I came home. I'd walk 5-6 times a day, and by the third day after surgery, I was walking about
2-3 miles ( five times around the block). The only problem I encountered walking was that the darn thigh strap would sometimes loosen up and start skooting down my leg, causing the tube to pull (ouch!). So I used a safety pin to secure the thigh strap to the bottom of my jockey underwear.
I noticed a few spots of blood and minor leakage around the tip of the penis - probably due to the irritation from the tube, so I used my wife's panty liners (the men's pads are too thick) for the problem.
I've now been without the catheter for over a week. I use 1-2 men's pads a day, and I've noticed that the continence is steadily improving. I walk 5 miles a day and feel great.
Columbus, Ohio Age 57
Gleason Score: 3+3=6
Gland volume: 71 grams
Robot. Prostatectomy: 4-18-08 Riverside Methodist Hospital
Surgeon: Dr. John Burgers
Tumor volume: Less than 5% of prostate.
No extraprostatic extension or seminal vesicle invasion.
Margins were free of tumor.