Tomorrow is the day

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 966
   Posted 9/17/2008 9:14 AM (GMT -6)   

Well tomorrow is the day for the surgery.  My secretary asked if I was ready.  I paused for a moment to think about it.  Work:  Management duties dispersed to the other managers…Check…Employees cross trained and know their responsibilities in my absence…Check…Paperwork rerouted properly…Check…Minor repairs around the house done…Check…Arrangements for boarding the pet…Check…Yard service hired…Check…All medical forms completed and turned in…Check…Yep…guess I am ready as ever.  

‘No’, my secretary said…’Are YOU ready?’

Sure I promptly replied.  But as I sat down behind my desk, I reflected on that statement and suddenly felt like Bud Johnson from the movie Swing Vote that was played by Kevin Costner and thought…’Maybe not’

I have been approaching tomorrow in the same methodical way I have always approached major events in my life.  Precision, directed, headstrong with an attitude of Man the torpedoes, full steam ahead.  But I had to take pause and actually reflect what was happening to me.

Am I second guessing my treatment choice…no…but there is that…‘What if?’…in the back of my mind still.  What if I didn’t do anything and went the Active Surveillance route instead.  After all, I don’t feel anything inside me…I feel great as a matter of fact.  Do I even need this surgery right now?  I have a low PSA, Gleason 6 and my doubling time is only 18 months.  I mean at that rate, it would be another 3-4 years before the PSA would be above 10 and that would still be considered low.  Now I know there is no way to know if the Gleason grade would remain the same during that period of time.  That is what makes this cancer so unpredictable.  And believe me, I do know that you stage 3 & 4 guys would love to be in my shoes right now and would not hesitate and without a doubt start a treatment plan. 

I have learned that cancer not only wages a biological war, but a psychological war as well.  And as with any war, there will be a certain amount of collateral damage.  I am prepared as well as anyone with that aspect.  But it was the psychological part that I hadn’t prepared for.  As with most men here on this forum, preparing and going into battle requires you to leave your emotions aside.  We all know the negative impact that the psychological and emotional state has on a battlefield…any battlefield.

So today will remain a reflective day…I will reminisce some and probably play that mental ping-pong in my head over this for most of the day.  But I will remain positive as I will probably be one of the lucky ones that will be cured of this disease in the end.

To all…thank you for your encouragement directly and indirectly and I will see you all on the other side.  :-)

Age 58 at Diagnosis
Oct 2006 - PSA 2.6 - DRE Normal
May 2008 - PSA 4.6 - DRE Normal / TRUS normal-Gland 38 cc
July 2008 - Biopsy 4 of 12 Positive 5 - 30% Involved Bilateral (Perineural Invasion present at base)
Gleason (3+3) 6  Stage T1C
Robotic Surgery scheduled Sept 18, 2008

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 270
   Posted 9/17/2008 9:24 AM (GMT -6)   
Don't look back. You are without question doing the right thing! The surgery will pass quickly. Soon you will have the pathology (which will most likely reflect a good report), and most importantly you will have done all you can do, be on the mend, and moving forward! Then of course you will be back to all those tasks you mentioned - which will be waiting on you. God bless!


Age 61
Original data - pre-operation
PSA: 5.1
T1C clinical diagnosis, Needle biopsy - 10 cores, Gleason 7 = 3+4 in 1 core (40%), 7 cores Gleason 6 = 3+3 ranging from 5% to 12%
All scans negative
Lupron administered 4/9/2008 for 4 months (with idea I would undergo external beam radiation followed by seed implants - then I changed my mind).
Robotic DiVinci surgery - Dr. Fagin (Austin) May 19th
Post operative - pathology
pT2c NX MX
Gleason 3+4
Margins - negative
Extraprostatic extension - negative
seminal vesicle invasion - uninvolved
1st Post PSA .04

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 176
   Posted 9/17/2008 10:48 AM (GMT -6)   
I'm a year out. Read the post I just made and good luck. Keep coming back here and letting us know how you are doing. Thoughts are with you. You concerns are real, but statistically a favorable outcome awaits you. Look foward to hearing good news from you soon.
43 yo. now
5/07 PSA 4.65 at routine physical
6/07 biopsy Gleason 7 (3+4)...diagnosed at 41 y.o.
6/07-9/07 manic research and interviews with physicians across the country in search of the "right" decision.  I went to Mass General in Boston, Loma Linda, University of Chicago and Northwestern.
9/17/07 - RRP at Northwestern Memorial by Dr. William Catalona.  Thankful the father of the PSA test was right here in Chicago.
Post op path report confirmed Gleason 7 (3+4). negative margins, no seminal vesicale involvement, no lymphatic or vascular invasion, bladder and urethral free and tumor volume was 5% of 27.3g.  
9/27/07 - catheter removal...let the games begin...
12/31/07 - threw out the pads (I only had used 1 pad per day for protection against minor drips)
I started Trimix 8 weeks after surgery with success.  I hope someday I won't need injections, but I hope more that my PSA stays at 0 forever.
9/17/08 One year past surgery and doing well.  PSA less than .1 and ED continues to get better and showing reasonably good results using Levitra which for a long time did nothing. 

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 293
   Posted 9/17/2008 10:56 AM (GMT -6)   
LV, I think we all went through second thoughts right up until the big day. Looking back almost a year, I am SO glad to have had all the cancer removed, it's done, out of my body and out of my life! You will find much relief on the other side tomorrow. What kind of pets? My two Goldens were waiting for me when I came home, and they would not play with me at all, but would sit as close to me as they could get and watch over me! Best wishes and look forward to hearing about your quick recovery.
Beachbum tongue
PSA 10 June 2007
Biopsy July 2, 15 of 16 samples positive
prostate weighed 40 grams
Di Vinci 10/09/07, four hours on table, 3 in recovery
Total time in Hospital: 29 hours
Record for Dr. Lance, 70% of prostate had cancer, but NO spread, clean margins,Clean nodes,
First PSA at 5 weeks, UNDETECTABLE!
Catheter out at seven days, dry from hour one!
Second PSA 19 weeks post op, UNDETECTABLE 2/11/2008
Third PSA 5/12/08, six months post op, UNDETECTABLE
Fourth PSA 8/21/08, nine months post op, UNDETECTABLE
The Lord has truly Blessed me.

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 78
   Posted 9/17/2008 12:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Good luck. You will soon join us on the "other side" of surgery and be happier for it.
Rising PSA 12/06=1.6 12/07=2.1 5/08=2.6
Biopsy 6/4/08 Positive
Diagnose @ Age 51 Gleason 3+3=6
Bone & Cat Scans Normal
Lapro Surgery 8/18/08 at Memorial Sloan Kettering
Catheter removed 8/26 - reinserted 8/29 - removed 9/2

Roger G
Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 150
   Posted 9/17/2008 12:32 PM (GMT -6)   
Do I regret having my surgery... Yes.  Ask me again in five or so years and the answer may be different, but at the moment it yes.
I do look for strength in those fighting both the complications and the advanced stages PCa.
I know these are not rational thoughts, but it's how I feel.
Age: 43 (2008)
DRE Small Ridge on prostate, PSA 1.5
07/2007: Diagnosed cancer, T2c, Gleason 3+4=7
09/2007: Laparoscopic prostectomy @ Hamilton General, 4 hrs.
              Both nerve bundles spared
              Pathology Report: Tumor confined w/in prostate
              T2c, Gleason is 3+3=6
              Went home with JP drain
10/2007: Made return trip to hospital.  All urine was comming out JP drain.
10/2007: Catheter removed. Next to no leakage
11/2007: 1st PSA <.003 :)
              ED: Started Viagra, no response yet.
12/2007: Had confidence to go padless!!!!!
12/2007: ED:  Stopped Viagra as it's causing hemroid problems.
01/2008: 2nd PSA <.003 :)
              ED: next to no response.
04/2008: 3nd PSA <.003 :)
              ED: next to no response.  Changed the Viagra prescription.
07/2008: 4nd PSA <.003 :)
              ED: Still NADA.  Changing to Cialis.

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 260
   Posted 9/17/2008 1:19 PM (GMT -6)   


...Good luck, you'll do fine...and like others said be glad you did it.....we'll see ya' on the other side...

   age: 53
   Pre-0p PSA  Feb. 08, 5.0
      4.22.08, 4.1
      PSA  spiked once about 8yrs ago to 5.0 three months later
      back to 2.9...then into the 1.2 range until my re-scheduled 
      "missed" appointment this past Feb.
      Biopsy 5.1.08 
      5 of 15 cores positive
      Da Vinci I read somewhere on this 
      site....."the first show of the day"
       DaVinci completed 7.29.08, Bladder Sling installed, hernia repair 
       completed during surgery.    
        Sent home 30hrs,  JP drain in place 7days,
       Path report "cancer fully contained"....Margins clear
        Cath removed 8.8.08(ten days) lightly used pad 24 hours
        ED therapy begins 8.9.08. 100mg viagra three times a week,
        pump everyday and hold for ten minutes.
        8.16.08 switched to Levitra 20mg.......whahoo, got lucky...
        immediate results..... 
           ..."just tryin' to reason with hurricane season"..

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 376
   Posted 9/17/2008 1:30 PM (GMT -6)   

It's normal to think what if right up to the time but once I made up my mind I was taking the proactive approach. I did some thinking and research along the lines of watchful waiting changing diet etc but when I asked the doctor form my second opinion he put it best to me that helped me move on. He said yes these were options but one fact will not change and that is you have Pca. That's when I made up my mind to move ahead, I have been real lucky on the incontence and ED issues and while it was thought I had caught my early too it was found I had more aggresive cells then the biopsy showed and while they still thought they had caught it in time I had a relapse in PSA readings and just finished salvage radiation treatments this past summer. So far so good but who knows, this was is my story and yours can be totally different, it's your choice but I am glad I didn't look back and here's hoping the path you have chosen is the right one and you have a good quick recovery.

Current age 50, Age at Dx-48 PSA 6.22 on 9-26-06
Biopsy 11-01-06, 2 of 13 cores 10% cancer, 2 other cores abnormal Up-dated 20% prostate cancerous
Gleason score 3+3=6 After Surgery Pathology report 4+3=7 a couple agressive Grade 5 cells found
Da Vinci surgery 01-09-07 UW Madison
Pathology Report- cancer 100 % capsual contained 1-18-07
1st & 2nd Post PSA Blood Test .1 and less - Undetectable
3nd Post PSA Blood Test 01-17-07 .3
March 27th PSA .422 Begin Salvage Radiation April, 14 2008
Radiation Complete June 4, 2008 36 treatments
August 5, 2008 PSA .09 or < .1 again
Incontenence-Pad free since end of May 07 4 1/2 months post surgery 
ED back to 95% prior to surgery - no medication required.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 407
   Posted 9/17/2008 3:35 PM (GMT -6)   
LV TX, you sound a lot like me, how I approached the surgery - which I had (via da Vinci removal method) September 10th, one week ago today.  Everyone around me thought I should have been more anxious, nervous, re-think the situation, choose other treatment, wait, etc., etc., and I handled the matter confidently without second-guessing because I have confidence in my primary care physician and the urologist/surgeon handling the matter.  I was so relaxed I went on vacation to Rio de Janierio for a week prior to surgery!
My surgeon telephoned today to give me the pathology report and it was perfect - perfect margins removed for a cancer that was more present than the biopsy had suggested.  I didn't feel a thing during surgery nor do I suffer from post-surgery aches and pains more than a little stress when I get in or out of bed and for which I've taken a couple of Tylenol (I have some codine pain pills, but haven't felt the need to use them).
I've encountered a couple of relatively minor post-surgical issues that though bothersome aren't serious and which will work themselves out in the next week or two.  The catheter has been almost a non-issue for me and I'm grateful I don't have to concern myself with running back and forth to the bathroom to urinate.  My catheter comes out next Monday a.m.  My walking has increased and the weather in Chicago is excellent right now and I'm doing maybe a block outdoors daily and an equal distance indoors in my building's hallway a couple of times daily.  My appetite is good and I'm pushing lots of liquids.
Everyone I'm speaking with is marveled that I'm looking so well and that I'm not complaining.  I'm now able to sit for longer periods, and my BMs started 2-days post-surgery.
What I think has helped me reamin calm and relaxed through all of this is reading the many first-person reports from people experiencing the same as me - I knew/know what to expect and my questions were answered even before I formed them.
Best wishes for a successful procedure and speedy recovery.

Age:  59

April '08 PSA 4.8 ("free PSA" 7.9), up from 3.5 year prior

June '08 had biopsy, 2 days later told results positive but in less than 1% of sample

Gleason's 3+3=6

Developed sepsis 2 days post-biopsy, seriously ill in hospital for 3 days

Dr. recommended robotic removal using da Vinci

Surgery 9/10/08

Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago, IL

Dr. Robert Nadler, Urologist/Surgeon


Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 823
   Posted 9/17/2008 6:05 PM (GMT -6)   

For two weeks after I found out about the cancer I was a basketcase. Then suddenly I knew everything would be alright. My family, a good friend and I stayed in a Hotel a block from my hospital the night before surgery. We decided to walk the block to the hospital the next morning for my surgery and during that walk I was reminded of the Movie Green Mile and a dead man walking. I put trhat thought out of my mind and turned my thoughts of where I have been, things I have done with my life, my wonderful wife, family, friends and the grandson that was coming in just a couple of months. By the time I got into the hospital and went to the pre-op area I was my old self cracking jokes with the Doctors and staff. My surgery went very well and hurt a lot less that the arm I broke in two places the year before. I had some problems and still do but my life still goes on and yours will too.

Good luck to your and let us know how you do on the other side of this thing.

age at dx 54 now 56
psa at dx 4.3
got the bad news 1/29/07
open surgery Duke Medical Center 5-29-07
never more than 2 pads
Tossed the pads this spring
ED still a problem
first year PSA less than zero

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 34
   Posted 9/18/2008 4:55 PM (GMT -6)   
lv good luck youl do fine  it is a emotional roller coaster listen toyour heart not your mind it will play nasty tricks on you it did on me ,iremember saying to yhe anetheseist , i want to see the robot he pointed it out to me and said see you on the other side sir ull b fine good nite now . next thing i remember was being whelled to my room  good luck and god bless u wiil b fine lol. lemonlime im 48 yrs old had robotic done 7 - 08 rochester ny dr joseph ... smilewinkgrin

Doting Daughter
Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 1064
   Posted 9/18/2008 6:17 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to the other side. I hope by now you are cancer free and on your way to recovery!!
Father's Age 62 (now 63)
Original Gleason 3+4=7, Post-Op Gleason- 4+3=7,
DaVinci Surgery Aug 31, 2007
Focally Positive Right Margin, One positive node. T3a N1 M0.
Bone Scan/CT Negative (Sept. 10, 2007)
Oct. 17 PSA 0.07
Nov. 13 PSA 0.05
Casodex adm. Nov 07, Lupron beg. Dec 03, 2007 2 yrs
Radiation March 03-April 22, 2008- 8 weeks 5x a week
July 2, 08 PSA <.02
Praying for a cured dad.

Co-Moderator Prostate Cancer Forum

Tony Crispino
Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 8128
   Posted 9/18/2008 7:31 PM (GMT -6)   
We'll all be waiting to hear the great results! You've got friends here now that you're "on the other side"

Age 46 (44 when Dx)
Pre-op PSA was 19.8
Surgery on Feb 16, 2007 @ The City of Hope
Post-Op Pathology: Gleason 4+3=7, positive margins, Extra Prostatic Extension (EPE)
Bilateral seminal vesicle invasion (SVI); Stage pT3b, N0, Mx
HT began in May, '07 with Lupron and Casodex 50mg (2 Year ADT)
IMRT radiation for 38 Treatments ending August 3, '07
Current PSA (September 17 '08): <0.1 ~ Undetectable!
You can visit my Journey at:

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 883
   Posted 9/18/2008 9:33 PM (GMT -6)   
LV, I'd say it is only normal to be thinking am I doing the right thing. As for most of us we have no symptoms or problems, just a test telling us we have cancer. Once you know it is hard to stick your head in the sand and ignore it. Many of us could probably have waited much longer than advised by our doctors to get the treatment we chose. As with most cancers, who know's how long waiting would end up being too long? I have hated all the complications and treatments I have had. But, I would have hated hearing that the cancer had spread just because I chose to wait.
I'm sure you will get through all this with flying colors.
It's always better to take care of this "Sooner" than later.
Good Luck and Hook'em Horns TX.

    43 at Dx and Surgery
    PSA 5.7, Biopsy 3 of 12 positive (up to 75%) all on left side of prostate, Gleason 7
    RRP on Oct. 17, 2006 - Nerves on right side saved. All Lab's clear. 
    Cathiter in for 28 days due to complications in healing. Removed Nov. 9, 2006
    First Post op PSA on Dec. 11, 2006  Undetectable 0.00.
    ED workable and usable with Viagra.
    Feb. 20th, 2007 - Feb. 4th, 2008  Cystoscope, Two Collagen injections,Second Opinion Consultation for Incontinance at OU Medical Center, Bio-Feedback training, Chiropractic, Accupuncture  to try to resolve ongoing incontinance (4-6 pads a day)  All PSA's 0.00.
    Feb. 22nd, 2008 - Surgery to install the AMS AdVance Male Sling.
    March 27th, 2008 - Sling not working, Little or no improvement.
    April 18, 2008 - Collagen injection.  Back to using 4-6 full pads a day within a week.
    May 14, 2008 - Another collagen injection to try to Band-Aid the leaking for our June cruise.  Will start making conusultation appiontments for AUS after we return.
    July 14th, 2008 - AUS consultation with Dr. Morey at UT Southwestern (Dallas).
    July 30, PSA 0.00.
    Aug. 22nd, 2008 - AUS Surgery by Dr. Morey
    Oct. 6th, 2008 - AUS Activation by Dr. Morey

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2008
Total Posts : 276
   Posted 9/23/2008 8:22 PM (GMT -6)   
LV-TX, I hope all has gone well, my sincerest wishes for a speedy and complete recovery. Stay in touch, we are all here for you.
46 you when diagnosed, now 47
Pre-Op PSA 9.9
1 of 12 cores positive, Gleason 3+3
DaVinci on 9/5/2007
Post-Op Gleason 3+6, Negative Nodes and Margins
Less than 1% of prostate involved with CA
3 Month PSA 0.01, 6 Month PSA 0.01, 9 Month PSA 0.01
Incontinence resolved 9/15/2007, one day after cath removal
ED showing significant improvement.
Cialis 5 mg every night.
Success with BiMix

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 637
   Posted 9/24/2008 6:49 PM (GMT -6)   
LV, Let us know how you are doing....We are all in this together.....Di
Husband Pete
dx Jan 2001 age 67 gleason 4 + 3 PSA 16.5
seed implant and conformal radiation Lupron from Jan 2001 to Jan2002
2005 Dec PSA began to rise from .5 to 8 within 6 months
Salvage surgery at MSK 9/06
Fistula operation 2/07 MSK
Many cystoscopies and ER visits with strictures
catheter for one year....Catheter taken out Sept 07..
Total Incontinence since then....
PSA .52 3/07
AUS Operation at MSK Sept 8. Dr. Sandhu
Waiting for activation October 21 2008

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