Incontinence Subsiding

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Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 260
   Posted 7/17/2009 9:37 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello All,

I stumbled onto this site last January about a month after my surgery. I was suffering from severe incontinence and was googling on that subject. At the time I was using 10 to 12 super absorbent pads per day, but was able to control leakage when seated or lying down. To say the least it was very disheartening.

I learned a lot from this site, some folks with problems worse than mine and some far more fortunate. Much of what I found here offered me hope that with time and patience the incontinence would subside. I give my heartfelt thanks to everyone I was able to obtain information from.

In March of this year I started using the Afex incontinence system (I learned about it from this site) which cut down on the number of pads I was using. I would have to empty the bag about every 2 hours but it was better than all the pads I was going through. Over time I began to realize I didn't have to empty the bag as often.

At this time, more than 7 months after surgery, I still wear the Afex system at work and a pad when at home. I only empty the bag on the Afex system after I get home from work and there isn't much more than a dribble in the bag. At home I use only a single pad in a day.

Last night was the first night I went to bed without any protection. I was nervous and didn't sleep well, worried that I might stain the bedding. Happily I made it though the night and continued without protection in the morning until I had to go out.

I offer this story in the hopes that it will bring hope to others with a situation similar to mine. I believe I will soon be able to give up my security blanket (pads and Afex) and be able to get in a hot tub or go swimming. Those of you who are at the beginning of the incontinence journey, try to be optimistic, do your kegals, and with luck you will succeed.

Thanks again to all I was able to glean hope from that allowed me to beat this phase of the PC beast.

Age 69, First ever PSA 7.8 taken June 2008, Biopsy July 2008, 10 of 12 cores positive, Gleason 3+3=6
da Vinci surgery December 10, 2008, catheter removed December 29 2008
St. Lukes Hospital, Bethlehem, Pa.
Dr. Frank Tamarkin
Prostate weight 73.0 grams, Gleason 3+3=6, stage pT3a
Tumor locations: right anterior apex, right posterior apex to mid
left anterior mid to base, left posterior apex to mid
extensive perineural invasion in right anterior apex, right and left posterior apex to mid
seminal vesicles negative

Elite Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25393
   Posted 7/17/2009 10:23 PM (GMT -6)   
Bob, that was a good and encouraging update. Patience and your system has paid off it seems.
The security blanket portion of going dry is very subjective, I continued to wear a Depends pullup at night for about a month after I was 100% dry, funny how us men can be about things like that. I knew it was silly, my wife knew it was silly, but it helped me sleep better. Then one day, I just stopped doing it and been fine ever since. It was the same with the one and only pad I insisted on when I went out in public, took me a while to break myself of that habit when it wasn't needed.

Good job though.

David in SC
Age 57, 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 capsule, one post. margin, clear lymph nodes 
First PSA Post Surgery   2/9 .05, 5/9 .10, 6/9 .11, 8/11 ?
Lastest 7/13 met with Rad. Oncl, they want to start radiation, 70 gray, I am still considering all options and opinions

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 39
   Posted 7/17/2009 11:09 PM (GMT -6)   


Congratulations on your progress.  I am envious.

While our da Vinci operations took place around the same time, your progress from incontinence has been much quicker.  As a matter of fact, I don't believe that I've experienced any progress whatsoever.  Still oozing 40 - 50 oz. per day.  Living in SW Florida, I do not attempt to limit my intake of fluids, such as water when playing tennis.  Like you, I do get some relief from the constant wetness of the pads by wearing the Afex system (not while active with a sport).  It certainly doesn't solve the problem, but it has been helpful.  I plan to continue to struggle with this incontinence problem at least until January.  Assuming no progress, I'll look at hard harder at an implantable device. 

Last PSA prior to biopsy  -  11.9
Biopsy  -  8/7/2008
Cancer findings at left lateral and left medial apex of prostate
Gleason score  -  3+3 = 6
Staging  -  T1c
Prostate size/weight  -  128 cc./ 99 grams
Bone and CT scans  -  9/12/2008  -  both clear
Age at biopsy  -  65         Health  -  Excellent (other PCa)  (Lift weights, play golf & tennis (incl. singles))
da Vinci RP surgery  -  12/15/2008 at Naples Hosp.
Surgeon  -  Dr. Wm. Figlesthaler
Hosp. Stay  -  1 night
Catheter removed  -  12/23/2008
Post-Op blood tests  -  2/2/2009, 3/27/2009 & 5/7/2009              PSA  -  undetectable
Completed 12 weeks biofeedback, coupled with electrical stimulation  

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 7/18/2009 3:19 AM (GMT -6)   
Well done Bob. Your post is encouraging for those of us on the same journey.

Diagnosed with PCa in April 09, aged 59. PSA 9.5 ng/mL, Gleason 3+3, 3/8 cores positive on biopsy.

Had laparoscopic radical prostatectomy in 21 May 09. Histopathology raised Gleason score to 3+4 but cancer confined to capsule with surgical margins being negative. Stage T2c. Nerves spared.

Catheter removed on 4 June 09. Currently coping with incontinence issues, but making progress!

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 407
   Posted 7/20/2009 9:21 AM (GMT -6)   
pa69 said...
Hello All,

I stumbled onto this site last January about a month after my surgery. I was suffering from severe incontinence and was googling on that subject. At the time I was using 10 to 12 super absorbent pads per day, but was able to control leakage when seated or lying down. To say the least it was very disheartening.
I, too, was using 10 to 12 (sometimes 15) super absorbant pads daily during the period immediately following my da Vinci surgery, and that situation continued for about the first three months.  I'm now 9 months post-op and down to 1 (rarely 2) lighter pads daily.  I walk a lot, drink a lot of liquids, and have returned to about the same lifestyle I enjoyed pre-op (with ED issues being the only exceptiion).

Age:  59 (58 at diagnosis - June, 2008)

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

Post-op Gleason's:  3+3, Tertiary 4

Margins:  Free

Bladder & Urethral:  Free

Seminal vesicles:  Not involved

Lymphatic/Vascular Invasion:  Not involved

Tumor:  T2c; Location:  Bilateral; Volume:  20%

Catheter:  Removed 12-days after surgery

Incontinent:  Yes (1/2 light pads per day)

Combination of Cialis and MUSE (alprostadil) three times weekly started 9-27-08

Returned to work 9-29-08 (18-19 days post-op)

PSA test result, post-op, 10/08: 0.0; 12/08: 0.0; 4/09: 0.0


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