Likewise, I welcome you to the club.
I currently am combining Viagra with a pump that i purchased recently. I take the Viagra, allow time (an hour to 90 minutes) for it to do the chemical thing. Then, my wife and I do some stimulation. Then, as I am getting fuller, longer, THEN i use the pump. It takes the state of things to a fuller level. I might use the pump for a few pumps, till i notice i am fuller, longer, harder, then take it off. Then, more stimulation. I have been firm enough to enter my wife (but not rock hard, like pre-surgery). It has been enough for my wife to orgasm competely. Then, after she is completed, I will pull out, and let her stimulate me to completion. Sometimes, i use the pump again, to get another quick boost.
about two weeks after receiving and "trialing" the pump, I tried the ring (that came with the pump) and the ring did keep me firm, firm enough to enter her. However, it cut off almost all feeling for me. It was kind of impersonal, as if i was not involved. I am delaying using the ring again.
Here's my current view of things. As my surgeon's office stated (i'll paraphrase): give things time, try different methods, try different pills, get a pump if desired and use it to get the blood flow fuller, etc. So, that is what i am doing. I am hopeful that all the efforts combined will produce better and better results over time.
I remember a few weeks after surgery that when my wife touched me, i felt almost no good feelings at all. I was very discouraged. The surgeon'ss office recommended that I start taking Viagra about 2-3 weeks after the surgery. And, even when i first started taking Viagra, i saw very little results, and still when my wife touched me, i felt almost zero stimulation. However, now I am 5 months post surgery, and I definitely see a difference in many ways. Just this past weekend, when my wife was touching me, the stimulation was very close to pre-surgery (in terms of how good it felt). However, the erection was not there, like pre-surgery. But when i think back two months ago, i was very frustrated that when she would touch me, that i did not get any real turned on feelings. Now i do (that is a huge positive change). And even the erections (though not yet rock hard) are longer, fuller, harder than two months ago. I would not say that they are even 90% of hard, maybe not even 80%, but they are getting better and better.
Maybe others who are further down the road, can comment on my progress and advise if that is what they encountered.
I am currently viweing things as many "separate" pieces, that I deal with separately. And hopefully over time, the pieces will come together into one complete process.
One piece is satisfying my wife, and bringing her to complete orgasm. Without getting graphic, let's just say that with both my fingers and mouth, i have always been able to bring her to completion. We even recently added a *** to the toolkit (which she was very much against, but after two uses, she is much more receptive to (on very rare occasions).
A second piece, is our mutual interest in my full hard erections coming back. The expense has not been fun, but we are trying both Viagra and Levitra. I even ordered the generic Viagra through the website occasionally mentioned on this website. Also, we are using the pump. I use it severa times per week (both by myself, just for a few minutes to get the blood flow going, and then stop. and also with my wife durnig love-making to take things to the fullest level possible. As i mentioned, things are improving, but not yet back to pre-surgery.
A third piece is my interest in orgasm. So far, i am unable to come to orgasm while inside my wife. Instead, we rely on my wife for hand and/or oral stimulation. The orgasms do occur. They take longer to get to, then pre-surgery (no duh). And, they are still not as satisfying as pre-surgery, but they are better. The rapid breathing and heartbeats are darn close to pre-surgery, as well as the quick downward spike after orgams. However, what I feel in my penis is still hit and miss. Sometimes, it is quite satifying in my penis. Other times, even though my wife brings me to orgasm, the feels in my penis are minimal. I still miss the strong and complete thrusting feelings of pre-surgery, but like i said, things are improving.
One last note: recently my wife and i had a heart to heart discussion. and the gist of it is that I need to have her touch me at times WITHOUT the anticipation of erection and without the anticipation of my entering her. It started to get to the point where we only fondled each other after a pill, and with the anticipation of my entering her. That put great pressure upon me, that when she touched me, i HAD to become erect. And for a couple fo weeks, we were going backwards. The internal pressure that i felt, caused me to become less erect. Since the talk, she now touches me, just so i can feel some pleasure, and then we stop. It might only be 5 minutes. My theory is that i want our interactions to be so that we will both feel good, and get turned on, and THEN maybe my nerves and blood flow will remember how things used to work, and that the erections will follow the good feelings (instead of a forced erection based on pump).
Lastly, i have chosen to not pursue the shots, after i read someone post about having to go to the hospital to get his penis drained after having a very painful priaspism. I realize that many use shots and have great results. I, personally, and holding off on the shots for now.
My apologies for such a long note.
8/1/2008: PSA 6.2, GP recommended retake.
8/27/2008: PSA 5.8 (%free 12.1) referred to Urologist.
9/10/2008: DRE - non palpable. Urologist recommended biopsy
10/2008 Biopsy appt:
10/21/2008: Biopsy results; 1 positive out of 10 samples.
Biopsy Results: Gleason 7 (3+4) , no evidence of perineural invasion.
Referred to UCSF
12/19/2008: Transrectal Ultrasound at UCSF
12/19/2008: Consultation with Surgeon.
Surgeon concurred on Gleason 7=3+4 (per slides).
2/24/2009: Robotic Assisted Laparoscopic Prostatectomy (DaVinci) UCSF
3/5/09: Cathetor removal.
Post Op Pathology: margins negative/clear, Gleason 4+3=7
4/8/09: first post-op Ultrasensative PSA: less than 0.01
Currently taking Viagra, Levitra (tried Cialis).
Purchased and using Osbon manual pump.