Hello one and all,
Five months ago, I had my open surgery and just wanted to give a general update.
While I am well healed up from the surgery and incision area, I still get occasional pains or phantom pains in the area. Especially if I over do lifting or excessive bending at the waist. My back and shoulders are still strong, and I tend to go too far sometimes.
In the incontinence department, I tell people that I am "Cautiously Continent". It took me about 2 months in that area before I became comfortable enough not to use any pads or diapers. Was dry at night from the start, and mostly dry otherwise. A lot of the incontinent ordeal for me was in my mind, more than my body. I was so determined not to have any accidents that I obsessed over it. (When you are OCD anyway, it can come in handy sometimes, lol). I can hold now for hours, like before surgery, but if I were to push it too far, and if I started to let loose, there would be no way I could hold it back. Kegals never did anything for me, so basically didn't do them after a couple of days. When I go on vacation soon, being in a crowded plane with limited bathroom time, I do plan to where a Depends guard just in case (the mental thing again).
In the ED department, or should I say lack of it. I am still amazed. For those that don't know, all my left nerves were removed, and the right side was described as being heavily scarred and damaged, so my surgeon didn't mess with them. After being on a catheter for 63 days, I was able to have natural errections right from the removal of the cath. The dr. speculates that the extra cath time may have helped give healing time for the nerves, and also could explain a fairly easly time to getting dry.
After about 2 weeks, errections were back to pre-surgery days, sex drive back to about the same, no shame telling, that means about once or twice a week interest. Can pretty well perform on demand, unless I am really tired. Dr. still feels no need to prescribe pumps, ED drugs or injections if I can do all that on my own. I agree, but consider it a miracle.
Only other problem and this is where each person is different, I still fight a lot of post surgery fatigue. Since I am still unemployed (not my choice), it gives me some slack in this area. I am not convinced still that I could work 40 hours work week, probably more like 20 -25. But for those that don't know, I was still dealing with chronic fatigue syndrom from previous radiation treatments from another cancer bout 10 years ago.
I see my dr in about a month for my six month post surgery PSA check up, and yes, I have plenty of psa anxiety, enough to go around. With a gleason 7 and a pre-surgery rapidly rising psa velocity, I can still only hope that the PCa was really contained. Still kind of gun shy at this point.
So that's where I am at 5 months. Wished I never had PC, but I did/do, and all things considered, not much more I could have done different. Still feel I have a first class urologist/surgeon with a very compassionate heart (well, as long as I have insurance, lol)
David in SC
56, 56 at DX, PSA
7/7 5.8, 7/8 12.3,9/8 14.5
3rd Biopsy Sept 08: Positive 7 of 7 cores, 40-90%, Gleason 7, 4+3
Open RP surgery 11/14/8, Right nerves spared, 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 .05, 6 month on 5/9