Air travel with cath?

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Godfather
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 2/8/2009 3:59 PM (GMT -6)   
I've just about decided to have open RP at Sloan-Kettering, a 3 hour plane ride.  Our preference would be to get home as soon as possible post-op.  My local Urologist is fine with following up.
 
The decision now is do whether we wait until the cath comes out or, if everything looks fine and the surgeon agrees, grab a flight the day of or the day after discharge.  As someone who's never had a cath in, I'm clueless as to what to expect.  Anyone fly back home with the cath still in?  Better to wait until it comes out? 
 
This site has been a godsend helping us to make these decisions.
 
Tony 


Age at diagnosis 61  5'8" 260 lbs.
Resides in SW Florida
12/07 PSA 2.6  12/08 PSA 4.0
Biopsy 1/09 - 6 of 8 nodes positive 
Left - 2 of 4 positive, 2% involved, 4+3=7 Gleason
Right - 4 of 4 positive, 40% involved, 4+3=7 Gleason
Perineual invasion is present 
DRE small nodule on right - Prostate 22.6 cc's
Hoping/planning da Vinci - searching for surgeon


gpg
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 180
   Posted 2/8/2009 5:01 PM (GMT -6)   
God bless you Tony,

I know you are anxious and you are covering a lot of ground very quickly. I did not have occasion to fly but I did do a lot of activity including driving a large delivery truck and did just fine. The plane will be pressurized and so there should be no issue there. I bet the airline would be very accomodating to your need to be near a restroom if you make them aware of your situation.

If it was me I would want to be home. The Foley is going to be there from 10 to 14 days if you are like the rest of us.

Good luck. Scott
Diagnosed @ 48yo 04/07
focal, low volume tumor gleason 6
RRP 07/30/07
Persistance of PSA
IMRT 11/07-01/08
Emerg, cysto obstructed bladder 01/08
Persistance of PSA
08/08 learned Dr. left significant amount of prostate
12/08 PCA3 negative
12/08 saturation biopsy 36 cores 24 having normal prostate tissue
12/08 referred whole to med malprac attorney


Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25382
   Posted 2/8/2009 5:30 PM (GMT -6)   
If you use the leg bag, you could have problems flying/traveling with it filling up to fast. If you use the big bag, you can disguise it in a bag or cloth or something, and then not have to worry about filling fast, though you might have to be more carefull about the long hose attached to it. There was someone on this site I remember reading that he flew from the US to Japan, or the other way around with a catheter.
Age 56, 56 at DX, PSA 7/7 5.8, 7/8 12.3
3rd Biopsy 9/8 Positive 7 of 7 cores pos, 40-90%, Gleason 7
Open RP surgery 11/14/8, Non-nerve sparing, 4 days hospital, staples out 11/24/8, 5th cath out on 1/19/9
Post-surgery Pathlogy Report:Gleason 3+4=7, pT2c, 42 grm, tumor 20%, Contained in capsular, clear margins, clear lymph nodes 
First PSA Post Surgery   2/9/9
 
 


Tony Crispino
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 8128
   Posted 2/8/2009 6:04 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Tony,
This will be easier than driving a stick shift with it. I actually moved about pretty well with the catheter. I got used to it and had a relative easy go. I suggest you get a note from the doctor for the TSA checkpoints, but they should be able to figure it out. MSK is a great facility and it will be worth it to be at one.

Peace,

Tony
Age 46 (44 when Dx)
Pre-op PSA was 19.8 : Surgery at The City of Hope on February 15, 2007
Geason 4+3=7, Stage pT3b, N0, Mx
Positive Margins (PM), Extra Prostatic Extension (EPE) : Bilateral Seminal vesicle invasion (SVI)
HT began in May, '07 with Lupron and Casodex 50mg (2 Year ADT)
IMRT radiation for 38 Treatments ending August 3, '07
Current PSA (January 13, 2009): <0.1
 
My Journal is at Tony's Blog  
 
STAY POSITIVE!


divo
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 637
   Posted 2/8/2009 6:07 PM (GMT -6)   
.....The leg bag is what you will have to empty quite often...But there are restrooms on the plane. I would definitely fly first class........It is worth it.with the catheter. especially right after surgery.... ( I think you can deduct it medically on your taxes) We flew back to FL after the fistula surgery with a catheter. We didnt do first class but looking back, I think yes.......Later on, when Pete got really good with the catheter, we flew from NY to Seattle, and then went on an Alaskan cruise. So, you see , many things are possible.....It is amazing what begins to be normal! I'm sure you will get your catheter out soon after you get home.... Diane
Husband Pete
dx Jan 2001 gleason 4 + 3 PSA 16.5
Seed implant and conformal radiation and 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 Dr. Eastham
Fistula operation 2/07 MSK Dr. Wong
Many cystoscopies and ER visits with strictures
Catheter for one year....Catheter taken out Sept 07..
Total Incontinence since then....
PSA .52 3/08
AUS Operation at MSK Sept 8 2008 Dr. Sandhu
Activated Oct 28th Dr. Sandhu..MSK
Some difficulty with AUS arising Nov 10 2008
Meeting with Dr. Sandhu to discuss AUS problems and new PSA test Dec 11, 2008
PSA .6 12/08
AUS improving..only 2 pads a day and one at night
Complete hip replacement surgery Dr. Waters Gainesville, FL 1/9/09
Forging ahead to health!


klondiker
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 43
   Posted 2/8/2009 7:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Leg bag should work fine for a three hour flight. It only takes a moment to empty in the rest room. You will do fine.
2004 PSA 2.7
2008 PSA 5.8
Sept 2008 PSA 5.66
Oct 2008 PSA 6.67
Biopsy on 11/25/2008 cancer found in 10% of one core gleason 3+3=6
open RRP done on 1/14/2008. Pathology showed 20% of prostate cancerous, gleason 3+3=6, contained in capsule
Age 55


Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25382
   Posted 2/8/2009 8:23 PM (GMT -6)   
My only reservation on the leg bag on a flight, is if you are dealing with crowded bathrooms at the wrong time. Of course, it doesn't take long to empty an leg bag. But sometimes when I was on one long term, I have actually had to empty 3 times in an hour.
Age 56, 56 at DX, PSA 7/7 5.8, 7/8 12.3
3rd Biopsy 9/8 Positive 7 of 7 cores pos, 40-90%, Gleason 7
Open RP surgery 11/14/8, Non-nerve sparing, 4 days hospital, staples out 11/24/8, 5th cath out on 1/19/9
Post-surgery Pathlogy Report:Gleason 3+4=7, pT2c, 42 grm, tumor 20%, Contained in capsular, clear margins, clear lymph nodes 
First PSA Post Surgery   2/9/9
 
 


Dave7
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 202
   Posted 2/8/2009 8:29 PM (GMT -6)   

I flew from Detroit to Tampa with the catheter in after my surgery and it wasn't a problem.  I went through the security thing without anyone questioning me.


Age:54
PSA 5/22/06: 5.6
DaVinci surgery: 9/14/06
Gleason: 3+3
Organ confined, clean margins.
Both nerve bundles spared.


Codger10
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 2/9/2009 12:19 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi, Tony.

Before flying you might ask your doctor about bladder spasms while the catheter is in place. I had no problem with surgery but had HORRENDOUS bladder spasms that caused bleeding and leaking of urine (and a whole lot of screaming on my part). I was told that a good percentage of guys do NOT have those spasms--or at least the severity isn't as great as I experienced--so you may be fine. But I suggest you ask. Having suffered through two full weeks of those spasms I can tell you that I would NOT have wanted to be on an airplane (or anywhere else for that matter) while having them.

I was also told that there are meds your urologist can give to prevent or lessen the spasms. The meds did NOT help me but that doesn't mean they won't help you.

I wish you all the best.
Steve B

Dirtmover
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 158
   Posted 2/9/2009 12:22 AM (GMT -6)   
hey ole buddy,the cath is much easier than most guys say, it was a peice of cake for me ,a 3 hr flight will be no big deal whatsoever,if i flew 1.5 hrs but didnt  have the cath in ,we stayed near the hos[pital for a week and had the cath removed then, just in case ther re complications i wanted to be near the hosp. that did the proceedure ,sloan is a great hospital, and your gonna do great ,for us it was just easier to stay ,,and we did ,but we didnt stay put ,day after surgery we went to hollywood blvd  ,wax museum and the latter part of the week we went to universal studios ,think we put 1200 mile on that p.o.s. rental car all with the cath in and never minded it im very happy your going for the proceedure , doesnt matter open or robotic your goin to a good hospital with good docs,,, .......................good luck my brother,,,,,dirt  scool
Diagnosed November 2007   (43 years old )
PSA 3.9 / Gleason 6 / TC1 6 cores 1 shows 25%
Sugery scheduled 5/29/08 - City of Hope - Dr. Mark Kawachi
 "First show of the day"
 and now for the new ive been waiting for
 FINAL PATH REPORT:gleason upgraded to 3+4 T2c bilateral disease,tumor involvment 5%
extra prostatic extention:absent
seminal vesical invasion :absent
pathological staging:pTNM pT2 ORGAN CONFINED
margins free of carcinoma
usable erections ;6-6-08 with little blue pill
continence; 1 pad a day, dry at night
continence a non issue at 10weeks


AstroNerd
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 56
   Posted 2/9/2009 7:13 AM (GMT -6)   
My catheter experience was a freaking nightmare. Hurt like hell the whole time it was in. Maybe because it was a #20, but it had me grounded the entire time it was in. The nurse told me I could use the leg bag, put on pants and go to a restaurant and no one would know. My arse! No effing way. Any bump or movement of that tubing or bag would send a horrible shock wave up into my penis and bladder.

There's no way I'd go anywhere with that thing in me - let alone one of those death tubes they call an airplane. I also have issues with flying, but that's another story for another time. :-)
cheers & beers,
Chris


Diagnosed on 9.23.08, age 47
Gleason 6, T1a
da Vinci LRP performed 1.22.09 at Moffitt Cancer Center by Dr. Pow-Sang
Catheter out on 2.4.09!!!!
Pathology: Gleason 7 (3+4), T2c. Tumor 15%, fully contained, margins clear, lymph clear.


AstroNerd
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 56
   Posted 2/9/2009 7:14 AM (GMT -6)   
Dave7 said...
I flew from Detroit to Tampa with the catheter in after my surgery and it wasn't a problem. I went through the security thing without anyone questioning me.


Who did you see in Tampa?
cheers & beers,
Chris


Diagnosed on 9.23.08, age 47
Gleason 6, T1a
da Vinci LRP performed 1.22.09 at Moffitt Cancer Center by Dr. Pow-Sang
Catheter out on 2.4.09!!!!
Pathology: Gleason 7 (3+4), T2c. Tumor 15%, fully contained, margins clear, lymph clear.


rob2
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 1132
   Posted 2/9/2009 7:16 AM (GMT -6)   
You should do fine. The leg bag will fill up pretty quickly. I remember going to a movie and within 2 hours and to get up and dump it out.
 
Age 48
occupation accountant
PSA increased from 2.6 to 3.5 in one year
biopsy march 2008 - cancer present gleason 7
decision - surgery (robotic)
surgery may 9, 2008 - houston, tx
pathology report -gleason 8
margins clear
9 month  PSA <.04 (low as the machine will go)
continent at 10 weeks (no pads!)
ED is still an issue


Purgatory
Elite Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25382
   Posted 2/9/2009 8:22 AM (GMT -6)   
Ditropan is the med you need to spasm relief, was on it 3x to 4x a day for weeks depending on the severity.

astro - that was a large cath you had, my last one was like that, and it cause severe pain all 6 days I was on it, so I can feel for you on that one.
Age 56, 56 at DX, PSA 7/7 5.8, 7/8 12.3
3rd Biopsy 9/8 Positive 7 of 7 cores pos, 40-90%, Gleason 7
Open RP surgery 11/14/8, Non-nerve sparing, 4 days hospital, staples out 11/24/8, 5th cath out on 1/19/9
Post-surgery Pathlogy Report:Gleason 3+4=7, pT2c, 42 grm, tumor 20%, Contained in capsular, clear margins, clear lymph nodes 
First PSA Post Surgery   2/9/9
 
 

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