A cath question with 24 hours to go...

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 4/22/2009 7:36 AM (GMT -6)   
Here we are. Tomorrow at 11:30 AM Mr. daVinci takes on Mr. Prostate. It's been a long journey and we're hoping that Mr. daVinci wins by a knockout.

Strange, but other than the pathology results, the thing that's freaking me out is the cath for 10 days. We've been buying diapers, special soaps, antiseptics. leg tape, etc and not planning on going out in public or having visitors for the duration. My general question is...Just how bad is it? My specific question is... Can the cath leak and should we get a mattress cover?

This site has been a real comfort for us and thanks to all. A quick prayer around 11:30 tomorrow couldn't hurt, by the way.

Age at diagnosis 61 5'10" 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 - MRI suspicious for extracapsular extension
DRE positive for nodule on right - Prostate 22.6 cc's
Scheduled for open RRP @ MSK 3/10/09 - canceled
Now scheduled for robotic RLP @ Sarasota Memorial 4/23/09

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 25
   Posted 4/22/2009 8:33 AM (GMT -6)   

Hello. I had DaVinci june 07 the Cath isn't that bad you will get a leg band that holds the cath to your leg you should get a bedside bag and a leg bag so when you have to go out it isn't visable. You will do fine

I would suggest for the first few eeks that you get a rubber sheet to go under the mattress pad this is only precautionary I did leak slightly from the cath but nothing major. (if it leaks major you need to call the doc and get them to check it out)

Good luck on the surgery you will be surprised how quick things will get back to some what normal there will be some inconveniencies but in the long run you will be cancer free

Age 54 (Dx age 52)

11/06 severe prostate infection PSA was at 52

2/07  4th PSA still at 6.2

3/07 Biopsy

4/07 5 of 12 core samples positive with Gleason at 6 -7

6/07 Robotic Radical Prostatectomy

Pathology showed Cancer was organ contained

Last 3 PSA’s 0

11/08 Dx with BNC (Bladder Neck Contracture) due to scare tissue

3/08 Scheduled for TUI, as well either an AUS or Male sling not sure at this point which one

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 760
   Posted 4/22/2009 8:48 AM (GMT -6)   

I had the catheter for two weeks. Never leaked, just worried about it. The first week I felt too lousy to do any entertaining or going out, although I did do regular walking around the house. But by the second week, I decided to start driving, took the kids Christmas shopping, etc. Couldn't walk too fast, but it was good to get out. I did use lots of lidocaine gel. Surgery pain was only bad the first couple days, and even then the pain meds took care of it.

Good luck, look foward to hearing from you on the other side.

Diagnosis at age 53. PSA 2007 about 2; PSA 2008 4.3
Biopsy September 2008: 6 of 12 cores positive; Gleason 4+3 = 7
CT and Bone scan negative
Da Vinci surgery at City of Hope December 8, 2008
Radical prostatectomy and lymph node dissection
Catheter out on 7th day, replaced on 8th day, out again 14th day following negative cystogram
Pathology: pT2c; lymph nodes negative; margins involved; 41 grams, 8% involved by tumor; same Gleason 4+3=7
PSA 1/22/08 non-detectable! 8-)

Steve n Dallas
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 4835
   Posted 4/22/2009 8:54 AM (GMT -6)   

I had mine in for five weeks. I was able to wear shorts to work so emptying it was a piece of cake...Not sure why you'd want to be a recluse for the duration. If you wear jeans or slacks - no one will know you have a cath....You should be able to go several hours without needing to empty it...

Since I was wearing shorts and didn't tie the thing down...it slid down my leg twice shocked Luckily no one saw it happen.

Age 54   - 5'11"   205lbs
Overall Heath Condition - Good
PSA - July 2007 & Jan 2008 -> 1.3
Biopsy - 03/04/08 -> Gleason 6 
06/25/08 - Da Vinci robotic laparoscopy
Catheter in for five weeks.
Dry after 3 months.
10/03/08 - 1st Quarter PSA -> less then .01
01/16/09 - 2nd Quarter PSA -> less then .01
Surgeon - Keith A. Waguespack, M.D.

Jake T
Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 4/22/2009 5:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Tony, good luck tomorrow, i will say that prayer at 11:30 tomorrow, i am scheduled for 4:00 pm. We will talk again soon.

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 299
   Posted 4/22/2009 5:54 PM (GMT -6)   
I hope that you didn't buy a lot of pads. I bought two boxes of 50 each and never used any from the second box so threw them away as I didn't know anyone that could use them. The 10 days went by really fast and the other advice posted is very accurate.
Age 60
PSA 2007 4.1
PSA 2008 10.0
Diagnosed April 2008
Biopsy: 6 of 12 cores positive
Gleason 4 + 5 = 9
CT and Bone Scan negative
Open surgery at Shawnee Mission Medical Center May 21, 2008
Right side nerves spared
Radical prostatectomy and lymph node dissection
Cather removed on June 3rd, totally dry on July 9th
lymph nodes negative
PSA Sept 28, 2008 0.00
PSA Jan 22, 2009 0.00

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 4/22/2009 6:26 PM (GMT -6)   

I wrote on your thread - good luck tomorrow. If I'm awake and lucid, I'll be thinking good thoughts....

Age at diagnosis 61 5'10" 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 - MRI suspicious for extracapsular extension
DRE positive for nodule on right - Prostate 22.6 cc's
Scheduled for open RRP @ MSK 3/10/09 - canceled
Now scheduled for robotic RLP @ Sarasota Memorial 4/23/09

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 626
   Posted 4/22/2009 6:57 PM (GMT -6)   

In the two years since my surgery I have read on this forum many posts about the cath.  Two years ago the nick name was Hang for the cath.  I had the cath for 13 days.  It was not that bad.  The third day after surgery I walked a mile with the cath.  It was well concealed in any of my normal pants and I went out to eat and to church with it.  No one could tell I had it.  Of course I used the leg bag most of the time and the big bag only during sleeping.  I do not see how it can leak.  The biggest problem for me was the pulling on the end of the penis which made it tender but I quickly learned to lube it up with the neosporin.  The cath was no big deal compared to dealing with the incontinence after the cath was removed.  Some do not have that problem and hopefully you are one but the majority end up with some degree of incontinence for a few weeks.


Diagnosed 7/6/06, 1 of 10 core samples, 40%,Stage T1c, Gleason 3+3
Da Vinci on 11/01/06, Catheter out on 11/13/06
56 Years Old
Post Op Path, Gleason 3+3, Approx. 5% of prostate involved
Prostate Confined, margins clear
Undetectable PSA on 12/18/06, 6/25/07, 1/8/08
No more pads as of 1/13/07
Began injections in April '07

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 143
   Posted 4/22/2009 7:10 PM (GMT -6)   
Jake and Tony,
As a minister, prayers are sort of my specialty. I'll be praying for both of you tomorrow.
The cath was not so bad. Had mine for 15 days. I just wore long nightshirts and stayed indoors except for walks around the back yard. No leaking at all. No pain either.
Bless you both, and we will see you on the other side of surgery, where the healing (physical and spiritual) takes place.
Rev. Bill in San Diego
Age 60 (59 when Dx) PSA 4.4
Biopsy 5/15/08 Gleason (3+3=6)
Bone scan and pelvic CT: clear
HT - 2 mo Casodex, 3 mo Trelstar
RRP Surgery 9/15/08 La Mesa California
Post-OP Gleason 3+4=7, Stage pT2c pN0 MX
Seminal vesicals, perineural margin, 18 lymph nodes, bladder neck: all carcinoma free
Perineural invasion & Distal Margin: Carcinoma present
IMRT adjuvant radiation (35 Treatments) End 1/27/09
PSA (10/13/08): <0.1
PSA (3/13/09): <0.1

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 655
   Posted 4/22/2009 8:08 PM (GMT -6)   
I'll just echo what several others have said.  Looking back it wasn't so bad although I really didn't like having the cath in for the 10 days.  Keep the end of your penis and the tube well lubed and you'll be fine.  Didn't leak at all.  I would also say to be careful about what you prepare for post catheter.  My wife went out and bought a package of adult diapers and a large package of pads.  I used one pad the first day, one pad the second day and the third day quit wearing them at all - I know I'm one of the lucky ones but I still have the diapers and pads as souvineers. David

Age 55
Diagnosed Dec 2007 during annual routine physical
PSA doubled from previous year from 1.5 to 3.2
12 biopsies - 2 positive with 2 marginal
Gleason 3 + 3 = 6
RRP 4 Feb 08
Both nerves spared
Good pathology - no margins - all encapsulated - Gleason 4 + 3 = 7
Catheter out Feb 13 - wore pad for couple of days - pad free Feb 16
Great wife and family who take very good care of me

Ed C. (Old67)
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 2458
   Posted 4/22/2009 8:19 PM (GMT -6)   
I had my catheter for 8 days. It wasn't bad at all. At night I connected it to the bigger bag that I put next to my bed. During the day, I used the smaller bad that is strapped to your leg> I was able to walk with the bag, go to the store, drive, and went to the movies. The only problem I had was when sitting on the toilet the catheter was pulling a little bit so I got a toilet seat riser.
Age: 67
PSA 9/05 1.15; 8/06 1.45; 12/07 2.41; 8/08 3.9; 11/08 3.5 free PSA 11%
Dx 12/30/08
2 cores out of 12 were positive Gleason (4+4) and (4+5)
Negative CT scan and bone scan done on 1/16
Robotic surgery performed 2/9/09
Surgeon: Dr. Randy Fagin, Austin TX.
Pathology report:
Prostate weighed 57 grams size:5.2 x 5.0 x 4.9 cm
Bilateral 10-20% involved
Gleason 4+4
both nerve bundles removed,
pT3a Nx Mx
Negative margins
seminal vesicles clean
Lymph nodes: not dissected
1st PSA test 4/7/09 result <0.1

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 883
   Posted 4/22/2009 8:19 PM (GMT -6)   

    I do not want to wish you any bad luck but my cath leaked most of the time I had it.  The only way it would not leak is if it was pulled "tight".  The Doc checked it out a couple of times and they did not seem to know why it would not seal?  I used the "belted" depends undergarments.  I also used women's pads and tape to help stop the leaking around the cath tube.  I only went out when I had to go to the doctor!

    I'm sure you will do just fine.  KW

    43 at Dx and Surgery (RRP)
    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.  Working Great, only light drips and dribbles.
    Jan, 31st, 2009 - PSA 0.00  Next test in July, 2009  

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 739
   Posted 4/22/2009 9:39 PM (GMT -6)   

Hey Godfather,

Good luck buddy for tomorrow, we went out and bought tons of pads too, but we wasted our money cus I did not need them, I was dry within one week.  The catheta tube looks kind of large and you think it wont fit, but it does, and there is now pain what so ever.  I know its easy said mate, but dont worry about it, it was a walk in the park for me, and 10 days goes pretty quick.  It comes out real easy too, and again no pain what so ever.  The water works was not a problem at all for me, but still working on Mr ED, he is still a no show, but they tell me patients is the thing.  Once the op is over, you will feel alot of relief, I know I did. Very important to keep those floor muscles working, right up until the op.  Good luck and cheers ............Rookey.

Age 51yrs
DX 11/11/08
DRE - Negative
6 out of 8 cores positive 3 X 60% / 3 X 10%
Gleason 3+4=7
Stage T1c
Robotic Surgery 24/12/08
Upgrade Gleason 4+3=7
Stage T2c
Three small foci total volume 10%
Neg Margins and Nodes
Nil - Extraprostatic Extentions
Dry less than 1 week (unbelievable)
ED- taking Meds/ No result yet
PSA 28/1/09 0.03
PSA 24/2/09 0.03
"Everyday in Everyway I get better"

Ralph Alfalfa
Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 469
   Posted 4/22/2009 10:09 PM (GMT -6)   

Good luck tomorrow Tony and Jake,

Catheter is an inconvenience, to say the least.  Keep the tip of the penis lubed up with Neosporin as well as the tube itself where it enters. If they have it installed correctly, the leakage should be minimal.  Remember, briefs, not boxers.  The toilet seat riser is a good idea to keep the pulling to a minimum.  If you use a handicapped toilet you'll see a world of difference.  Sometimes the strap tends to slide down your leg with the small bag if you're active.  I used an ace bandage, wrapped loosely, around the top strap and that helped.  Wear sweat pants.  The bulkiness tends to hide the fact that you're wearing the bag and you can go out in public with nobody noticing.  Have a supply of pads at home for the return trip and from then on it's "hang in there "until it's out.  lf you drink a lot of water, which is recommended to get the hospital drugs flushed from your system, expect to empty it fairly often.  Fluid intake equals fluid output...so plan accordingly. 

All the best,


 Dx: October,27(the day after my birthday)
 Psa 14.5
 Gleason:(4+3) 7 T1c
 Bone scan:Negative
 Cat scan: Negative
 Biopsy: 4 of 12 positive, left side, pre-cancerous on the right.
 Confined to prostate.
 DaVinci Jan. 19th, No lymph node involvement, all margins clear.
 8 week PSa <0.01
 Gleason downgraded to (3+4)7
 Fully continent...ED progressing as expected.

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 133
   Posted 4/22/2009 10:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Best wishes to you. I too just went through the procedure and had the catheter removed yesterday after 12 days. At first it take adhusting to being "tethered" to the new plumbing system. it doesn't hurt, it's just annoying but can be dealt with. After a few days you learn to accomodate the tubing and use the leg bag during the day. Eventually you can even walk around the neighborhood just make sure that the rubber straps are tight. You will be emptying it routinely so don't be concerned about lugging around a full bag. At night you have only a few positions that you can sleep in in order to accomodate the tubing which is different than the day devise. As we all did, give up your modesty and listen to the nurse who will teach you how to take care of yourself.
Teddy G

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 43
   Posted 4/22/2009 10:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Godfather, I will say a prayer for a good surgical result for you. The catheter was very uncomfortable for the first couple of days. I felt that the bladder spasms were caused by the catheter but I may have had them regardless. As others have told you, sweat pants work great for wearing the leg bag. Drink a lot of fluids to the point of having very light colored outflow. I had no leaking. Had to sleep on my back or side to accommodate the tube. After the first week, I found that it was nice to be able to drink a gallon of coffee without getting up.
Removal was easy. I wore one diaper, and one bag of pads. I am improving slowly every day.
Good luck tomorrow. Check back in when you are able.
Age - 55
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
First post op PSA 2/10/09 - 0.07
As of 2/11/09 down to one or two pads per day

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 240
   Posted 4/23/2009 11:43 AM (GMT -6)   

Well, I guess it is happening for you as I write this. I absolutely wish you the best.

I had a cath for 8 days. It is shocking at first, but you will be surprised at what the body can get used to.

I never could get comfortable with the leg bag, so I just wore khaki cargo shorts, put the cath bag in a cloth carrying bag and carried it around. I did not go much of anywhere for the first week, but when I went back to the Dr's for removal, I wore what I just described, and nobody seemed to pay much attention.

Good luck,
Age: 53; 52 at DX
March 2006: PSA 2.5
Dec 2007: PSA taken for insurance application. I did not see the results until late
Jan '08 - after I was rejected. Their lab said PSA 4.5.
Feb 2008: PSA 3.7.
March 2008: Biopsy. Gleason 7 (4+3) 12 cores taken. 5 on the left side were
cancerous and the 6th was suspect.
May 5, 2008: Da Vinci robotic laparoscopy at GW Hospital, Washington DC.

Post op: Gleason 9 (4+5). 15% of prostate involved. Stage: pT3a. Negative margins. Lymph node and nerve samples taken, and appeared to be cancer free.

July 2008: PSA at 7 weeks was undetectable.
August 2008: PSA at 14 weeks (3 months) was undetectable.
Nov 2008: PSA at 6 months was undetectable.
Feb 2009: PSA at 9 months was undetectable.

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 194
   Posted 4/23/2009 3:03 PM (GMT -6)   

My wife took some boxer briefs and modified them for me so that the waistband unsnapped and snapped back shut. It really made the catheter easier to deal with in bed. Just slept on my back and never had any leaks at all. I only had it for 6 days so I never used the leg bag. Just carried the bag around in a canvas utility bag like a purse. Piece of cake!
Age at DX 57
5-18-07 PSA 7.7
5-06-08 PSA 4.6  8% free psa, but stable
10-23-08 PSA 5.65 4% free psa
11-04-08 biopsy
11-11-08 2 of 12 cores positive
Gleason 3+3  6  stage t1c / post-op 3+4  7  stage t2c
CT and Bone scan negative
Da Vinci RRP 01-09-09
Catheter removed 1-15-09
Pathology Report says it's gone!
Fully continent on 4-09-09, no more pads
First Post-op PSA 2-17-09   0.00

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 71
   Posted 4/23/2009 8:18 PM (GMT -6)   
My friend who's a nurse recommended we get a scrip for viscous lidocaine to keep it lubed.
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