You received alot of data regarding pads but I don't think that your question was answered. For most* guys the road to dryness takes a bit of time but immediately after catheter removal your bladder and sphincter go back to work. Of course as the Docs say "you have to retrain your bladder", hence, kegel excercises. If you are like most of you will have a lower bladder capacity for a while and will feel the need to go more often, and will not bypass a mens room w/o dropping by. You will probably need pads for a while (and the doc should explain and show you what to use). Briefs, not boxers. You will start out with several a day and eventually reduce your usage and size of pads. Eventually you will notice that, by goodness, you don't need them anymore. It took me 3 months from a-z. I packed the little buggers in suit pockets, brief case and car just in case, but eventually ...no more. One caveat: once in a while if I cough or laugh in a funny way I have a teeny spurt, a drop. So, maybe dry right away, maybe 3 months or a year but the course should be similar for most.
* I recognize guys, that we all have a separate experience but the stats say that ~80+% get control back.
Age 55, two teens, very fit cyclist (avg 2000+ miles per year) and weight, diet, etc. consistent with good habits. Stressful job as attorney; very supporting wife who is helping me through every stage of this war.
2006 PSA - 1.5
2007 PSA - 2.3
2008 PSA - 5.3 (18 mos.)
2009 Jan. 20 - Biopsy 12 samples
Feb 3 Dx 2/12 samples positive, low volume (5% and 7-10%)
Gleason 3+4, later downgraded by second opinion at Johns-Hopkins to 3+3, but "it's still PCa" as my Doc said.
Laproscopic surgery April 9, University of KY Medical Center, Lexington, 3 days in hospital, catheter removal April 21.
Pathology: clear margins, no cancer in prostate: told that this is very rare and Doc has only seen it in 3 out of over 1400 cases; I rearched the concept of "vanishing cancer" and found a tumor classification of tP0 and asked Doc if it applied to me. He said that it was unlikely because if a pathologist had done a much more detailed analysis of the tissue, he would likely find more foci somewhere, and biopsy found "needle in the haystack as opposed to the tip of the iceberg"; Nevertheless, it is a blessing;
Regardless of the science, my family says "miracle."
Now working w/ post-surgery issues....