Incontinence hope and psychological pad dependence

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 7/19/2010 12:17 PM (GMT -6)   
I had robotic 12/07, and fortunately am still < 0.01 and making minor, yet incremental progress in ED. For the first two months following surgery I was pretty severely incontinent, but within four months settled into one pad every 24 hours with minor, but seemingly consistent seepage. I even went to the lengths of buying a small scale, which indicated that the pad was increasing 7g/cc within 24 hours. I settled on the Tena Male Guards and pretty much put a new one on every morning after a shower without even thinking of it, resigning myself to a lifetime of pads. It struck me that at least some of the weight gain in the pad was likely perspiration, but settled into the pad habit and thought little more of it. Then, about a month ago as temperatures started climbing I was dreading another summer and avoiding swimming pools, etc.

So...I tried a little experiment and simply ditched the pad, and (as Gomer Pyle might have said) shazam! Dry underwear! Not that anyone else around here over thinks any of this stuff, but frankly I'm shocked I never considered that I had become needlessly psychologically dependent, yet I clearly had. While I have to make a great deal more effort being sure I'm completely drained following urination, I am pretty much back to normal.

Long story, there is hope almost three years out for improvement to near normal, and something for those in my shoes to ponder to make a huge step back to a pre-surgical life.

Now...on to ED, which in part due to this accomplishement now seems surmountable as well.

Progress, not perfection.
Robotic RP 12/07
Age 46
Pre-surgical PSA 5.02
Bone scan/Chest X-ray clear
All margins, seminal vesicles, bladder resection margin, 17 lymphs clear
Three Post-surgical PSA's <0.01
Forth (one year 12/08) PSA 0.01 (not less than)
Fifth (on my own initiative 2/09) PSA 0.01
Sixth PSA back down to less-than 0.01 boooyah!

Steve n Dallas
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 4849
   Posted 7/19/2010 1:27 PM (GMT -6)   
"Mind over Bladder"
I've mentioned the following a couple times but feel its worth repeating:
At the month three visit with my surgeon I was on two pads. Could have done just one but prefer a fresh start.....Surgeon said he wanted me off pads by the next visit in three months.....He said it like I had a choice in the matter.
Two days later on Saturday I went pad free and haven't looked back.
I had a few accidents from time to time but never enough to warrant a pad.
Age 55   - 5'11"   215lbs
Overall Heath Condition - Good
PSA - July 2007 & Jan 2008 -> 1.3
Biopsy - 03/04/08 -> Gleason 6 
06/25/08 - Da Vinci robotic laparoscopy
05/14/09  - 4th Quarter PSA -> less then .01
11/20/09 - 18 Month PSA -> less then .01
05/18/10 - 24 Month PSA -> less then .01
Surgeon - Keith A. Waguespack, M.D.

Elite Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25393
   Posted 7/19/2010 1:34 PM (GMT -6)   
I believe that for many men, there is a lot of truth to the pad dependency. It's been a while, but I remember when I originally went "dry", long before I got into this endless world of catheters, that I wore pullups every single night for an extra month, even though I had never leaked or wet myself at night. My wife kept saying that I was too worried about a "mistake". When I finally put them away in the closet, never needed one or gave it another thought. Of course, this conversation doesn't apply to any one with an ongoing incontinence problem which requires the constant use of pads.
Age: 57, 56 dx, PSA: 7/07 5.8, 7/08 12.3, 9/08 14.5, 10/08 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/08 - 7/7 Positive, 40-90% Cancer, Gleason 4+3
Open RP: 11/08, Rht nerves saved, 4 days in hospt, on catheters for 63 days, 5th one out 1/09
Path Rpt: Gleason 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% cancer, 1 pos margin
Incontinence:  1 Month     ED:  Non issue at any point post surgery, no problem post SRT
Post Surgery  PSA: 2/09 .05,5/09 .1, 6/09 .11. 8/09 .16
Post SRT PSA: 1/10 .12, 4/8 .04, next one: Aug 3
Latest:  7/9 cath #6 - 41 days, 8/9 2nd corr surgery, 8/9 cath #7 - 38 days, mapped  9/9, 10/1 - 3rd corr. surgery - SP cath, 10/5 - 11/27 IMRT SRT 39 sess/72 gys ,cath #8 33 days, Cath #9 35 days, Cath #10 43 days, 1/19 - Corr Surgery #4,  Caths #11 and #12 ,Cath #11 - 21 days,  Cath #12 - 41 days, 3/2- Corr Surgery #5, Cath #13 - 4 days, Cath #14- 27 days, Cath #15 - 26 days, Cath #16 - 31 days, Cath #17 - 39 days, 7/2 - Corr Surgery #6, Cath #18 - 13 days, Cath #19 - 17 days, Total Blockage, Cath # 20 - 7/19

Steve n Dallas
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 4849
   Posted 7/19/2010 3:29 PM (GMT -6)   
I still remember leaking a ton when getting out of my recliner the first day or two after the cath was removed. But then I learned how to "squeeze aka kegal" and the leaks turned into little squirts. Then the little suirts turned into a natural - "don't do it till you in from of the potty" kind of thing.

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 83
   Posted 7/19/2010 8:24 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Guys
  Down to a pad and half a day, 14 weeks post surgery and I feel like I fall into this pad dependance that your discussing. The other day after my shower I forgot the pad and walked around the house for two hours, dry underware.
  Have my three month PSA coming up next month on the 6th, guess I'll try to step up then, my worry is that I"m in the process of painting the house there's alot bending down picking up going on and I can feel the sqiurts. Oh! what the h-ll I'll give it a try.
                                                                                                                           Thanks Guys  Tim
58 yrs.
PSA 6.94  12/10
Bio. 8 of 12 cores pos. 2/1
Gleason   3+4=7
Da Vinci    4/14
Tumor volume  9%
Extraprostatic extension- within margins
Margins    clear
T2c NO Mx
PSA. 6wks. post surgery .01

Worried Guy
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 3742
   Posted 7/19/2010 8:33 PM (GMT -6)   
Clearly you guys are in the long bladder sphincter class. There is nothing psychological about my pee pad usage. I leak. A lot. I have tried going without pad for a few minutes but it ends in disaster. The only time I am not wearing a pad is when I am in the shower or outside wearing a bathing suit. As an experiment I have tried to hold it while showering but it always comes out eventually. All it takes is one false move (reach for the shampoo, sneeze, turn on the water, adjust the temp, etc.) and I let loose. I am still improving but very slowly. I leak at 10-12 cc/ hour when I am awake. I dream of the day when I will be a 7 cc/day!
This is encouraging news.
Married 34 years, DX Age 56. First routine PSA test on April 8, 09: 17.8. Start 2 weeks of Cipro to rule out protatitis. May '09 PSA: 22.6, 3 weeks later: PSA: 23.2.
Biopsy 6/10/09: 7/12 scores positive, 20%-70%, Gleason 3+4=7, 3+3=6. Bone and C/T scans neg.
RP DaVinci -7/21/2009 @ Univ of Roch Medical Center
Left nerve gone, right partial spared.
Catheter removed - 7/31/2009 Pathology report received:
Gleason 3+4=7, Tumor size: 2.5 x 1.8 cm, location: both lobes and apex.
Extraprostatic extension present; Perineural invasion: present, extensive.
No Malignancy in Seminal Vesicle, vasa deferentia, lymph nodes 0/13
Prostate mass 56 grams. Pathologic Stage: pT3aN0MX
Post Surgery Status:
Potency - 12/11 5 months, Still no activity, zip. Using pump daily since 11/11. No effect with 20 mg of Cialis or 100 mg of Viagra. Shots next See Uro 1/22/10 Trimix #1. Try 0.08- 25%, 0.12-25%, 2/26/10 try 0.16 First Success! 90%.
Incontinence - 8/20 4 full pads per day
.. 9/7 3-4 full pads per day. Try controlling fluids.
12/11/09 5 months: 3 pads per day, 400-450ml/day
02/26/10 7 months: 3 pads but leak is now 320 ml (5 day avg.)
03/22/10 8 months: 3 pads per day, 280 ml/day (5 day avg.) PT says all muscles are tight and working properly. "There must be another issue."
5/22/10 10 months: 2 pads per day, 190 ml/day Scope on June 15 "Short sphincter"
7/15/2010 one year: 2 pads per day. 140 ml/day, dry in bed.
Post Surgery PSA - 9/3 6 weeks - 0.05; 10/13 3 months - 0.04, 1/14 6 months - 0.05,
4/14 9 months - 0.04 (Siemens Centaur) and <0.01 (Roche ECLIA).
7/12 1 year - 0.03 (Siemens Centaur, direct chemilum); <0.01 (Roche Cobas 601 ECLIA)

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 7084
   Posted 7/19/2010 10:23 PM (GMT -6)   
I tried the "it's all mental" route - did several extra loads of laundry that week. May be mental, but it is still a soggy wet mess to wake up to, or try to sneak out of a meeting with pee dripping into your shoe.
Then radiation did it's kick in the arse -
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