New member saying hi--and thanks already

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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 9/28/2010 11:16 AM (GMT -6)   
Was diagnosed positive in June, PSA had jumped from 2.7 to 3.9 in 2 years, and had a Gleason of 3+3, am 56 in active health stage.

Did a lot of research and reading, and decided on the Di Vinci procedure on the 23rd of Sept. Live in NYC area so had great options to choose from. All good so far--have been walking 1-3 miles a day, but catheter is quite abrasive at the tip--so quite difficult to walk as often, long or far as I would like.

Have moved up to regular meals but keeping it easy----eggs, spinach, fruit etc. Am taking Colace---heard constipation a real problem.

Having catheter out this Thursday.

Have read so many of the posts here------all great, thanks a ton!!!

A little concerned about the continued catheter discomfort---have tried Vaseline, baby oil--but still painful, and concerned about the incontinence once it's out. BTW, when you all say "pads" ---do you mean pads, or a Depends type full unit pad? What should I take to the Dr's?


Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 966
   Posted 9/28/2010 11:32 AM (GMT -6)   
Welcome Spartan,

Yeah, that catheter is quite the pain isn't it. You might try what I did, and that was make a big 'J' loop where it comes straight out of the tip and then loop back up and tie firmly with bandage to the inside of the leg. That kept the movement at the tip to a minimum for me.

As far as when they remove the cath...I would recommend the full Depends until you see how much leakage is involved. I wore the full Depends for a few weeks before changing to pads that stick to the inside of the underwear.

Hope you did your kegals before surgery...that would help strengthen the pelvic floor muscles.

Best of luck.
You are beating back cancer, so hold your head up with dignity


Signature details in Sticky Post above - page 2

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 1100
   Posted 9/28/2010 11:34 AM (GMT -6)   
Hey Spartan. Sounds like things are going well with the recovery. Glad to hear it, and I hope to hear the path report stays 3+3. Who did the surgery? Best wishes, Medved.
Age 46.  Father died of p ca. 
My psa starting age 40: 1.4, 1.3, 1.43, 1.74, 1.7, 1.5, 1.5

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 2845
   Posted 9/28/2010 11:38 AM (GMT -6)   
SPARTAN - as they say here, welcome to the club no one wants to be a member of ..
you got some good basic advice from Les -
-I used Desonex (baby diaper rash cream) on the penis head and that helped - and reduction of movement is a key thing as well.
-the insert pads ( male guards - tena pads or depend male pad) worked ok for me when going for the hospital when the doc took the catheter out - had the jockey type underwear (say goodbye to boxers for a while) and DARK pants and pad all ready...
-all the best - keep in touch.

Age: 55 -gay with spouse, Steve - live in Peteborough, Ontario, Canada
PSA: 10/06/2009 - 3.86
Biopsy: 10/16/2009- 6 of 12 cancerous samples, Gleason 7 (4+3)
Radical Prostatectomy: 11/18/2009
Pathology: pT3a- gleason 7 -extraprostatic extension -perineural invasion -prostate weight -34.1 gm
Post Surgery-PSA: April 8, 2010 - 0.05 -I am in the ZERO CLUB
Sept 23, 2010 -0.05 - again -hoorah !

James C.
Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 4463
   Posted 9/28/2010 11:40 AM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to the forum and the other side of your PCa journey. You might use neosporin type antibacterial ointment on the penis tip. I found that if I cleaned the catheter tube off well, then pulled the penis back up the tube itself, put neosporin on the exposed tube, then slide the penis back down over this, it lubed the inside of the penis for an inch or so, then I added some more to the head and an inch or so of the outside tube.

The discomfort of the catheter is just part of the experience, some have less, some more trouble wearing it. All heave a giant sigh of relief when it finally drops out...

Most guys call anything put in their shorts pads. Lots of guys find it cheaper and more effective to use the form fitting female sanitary pads, of whatever absorbancy they need, others use the male incontinence pads. It's what works best for the individual. I'd not spend a lot of money on buying pads of any type until after the removal and you see what you may need. Some docs office provide a pad, others don't. If married, ask the wife for a couple of hers, just in case. You can always buy more after the catheter is removed and you have figured out what will work. Also, remember you are sliced, diced and stitched back together inside, with lots of internal swelling, so it may take days or weeks for all that to subside, heal and present a true picture of your degree of continence, so don't get downhearted the first few days. It's a process and can't be rushed.
James C. Age 63
Gonna Make Myself A Better Man
4/07: PSA 7.6, 7/07 Biopsy: 3 of 16 PCa, 5% involved, left lobe, GS6
9/07: Nerve Sparing open RRP, Path: pT2c, 110 gms., all clear except:
Probable microscopic involvement of the left apical margin -GS6
3 Years: PSA's .04 each test until 04/10-.06, 09/10-.09- Uh-Oh
ED continues: Bimix .30cc & Trimix .15cc PRN

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 51
   Posted 9/28/2010 12:47 PM (GMT -6)   

I had open RP on the same day.

I too find the catheter irritating. On the advice of my Uro, I'm applying bacitracin ointment at the tip of my wille. Cath is scheduled to come out Fri.

Good luck to you.

Age: 49 (09/61)

PSAs: 12/08 - 1.8, 12/09 - 2.5, 6/10 - 3.9, 8/10 - 5.7

Biopsy 8/10: 14 samples, 5 positive, Gleason: 3 + 3

open RP 9/23/2010

Post Op Path: Organ contained, Gleason 3+3, nerve bundles spared, negative margin.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 7084
   Posted 9/28/2010 12:54 PM (GMT -6)   
I flooded the office floor when they took my Foley catheter out (I did DaVinci). Took months to get down to a few days a day. They told me to bring a pant (already had them due to heavy leaks from bladder spasms) - they did not provide them.
At first I used a Depends pant, with a Walgreens Certainty guard (heavier than Depends) inside - pad got wet, changed it as needed during the day. The pant was a backup that was often needed.
Eventually got to the slightly lighter, but more comfortable Depends Guard, then could quit using the pant after a few months.
I used the ladies heavy pads at night. Thick and not very comfortable, but beat doing the laundry every morning.
Hate to say I am still on the guards. Hope you won't need them from the start!
Depends is marketing a new variety of pant, in a pack of 6, which might be a better choice until you have an idea of what you will need, since all the rest are 14+ per pack.
Tena also makes a Male Guard that is somewhat lighter and thinner than the Depends.
Before you go to the store, check the Depends and Tena web sites - they normally have printable coupons that will help. Both send sample packs as well, which you might as well request, although it may take a few weeks for them to show up.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 2680
   Posted 9/28/2010 2:39 PM (GMT -6)   
I had my DaVinci surgery on August 20th and the catheter removed 10 days later.   Removal of the catheter was painless and not a problem.  The doctor gave me a male pad for my briefs, identical to the Walgreens Certainty Guards for Men we had brought along just in case he wouldn't have one to provide.  I had worried about continence issues after hearing some of the problems that some guys have, but luckily it has turned out to be not that much of a problem.  After we left the urologist's office, we went for lunch at Olive Garden; then, as a reward to my wife (who also happens to be an R.N. with nearly 40 years of experience) for all her help and support, we drove to a garden center and spent a couple of hours looking at plants.  I used the restroom a couple of times, but had very little leakage.  For the first week, I used two of those pads per day, but soon went to one a day, and now use them primarily out of caution rather than necessity.  I hope it works out as well for you.  We had bought some Depends-type briefs, but I've never opened the package.  One other thing:  you don't get as much ventilation to the area when wearing the guards, so watch out for jock itch and give the area some air now and then.  Good luck!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2010
Total Posts : 3892
   Posted 9/28/2010 6:37 PM (GMT -6)   
I too got great benefit from walking..Yes, the cath is a pain..they gave me a 2 inch wide elastic band, Velcro closure, that wrapped around my upper thigh and it had a separate flap for the catheter. I could adjust the loop in the catheter to minimize irritation..
Age 68.
PSA at age 55: 3.5, DRE negative. Advice, "Keep an eye on it".
PSA at age 58: 4.5
PSA at age 61: 5.2
PSA at age 64: 7.5, DRE "Abnormal"
PSA at age 65: 8.5, DRE " normal", biopsy, 12 core, negative...
PSA age 66 9.0 DRE "normal", 2ed biopsy, negative, BPH, Proscar
PSA at age 67 4.5 DRE "normal"
PSA at age 68 7.0 third biopsy positive, 4 out of 12, G-6,7, 9
RRP performed Sept 3 2010

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 225
   Posted 9/28/2010 11:23 PM (GMT -6)   
I developed irritation and a slight infection at the tip where the catheter came out, mostly because I walked too much in the first two three days after surgery. What worked for me was my urologist told me to alternate between applying neosporin and distill water cleaning of the tip a few times a day. The irritation and infection went away after I came home and reduce the amount of walking. Getting the catheter out felt soooo good.

English Alf
Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 2218
   Posted 9/29/2010 4:45 AM (GMT -6)   
Welcome Spartan
Walking is good for helping with recovery, but walking too fast can make the catheter move too much and that can hurt/ache. Others have already recommended some useful creams etc for soreness.

Snug underwear is a must with pads, as is a dark colour. You'll probably want to be wearing dark pants too.
After the catheter comes out you may want also to hang around at the hospital for a while to find out how things feel rather than jump straight in the car. (I felt like things would never close, but about half an hour after the catheter was out I was getting a bit of control over it and appreciated that the pad was doing its job.)

My catheter was taken out by a male nurse, who just handed me a pad and left me to it. Unlike after the operation a female nurse had made sure the pad was in the right place. What the right place will depend on size, both the size of you penis and the size of the pad.

I was supplied with lady's pads by the hospital. I live in Holland so it was a Dutch variety called Attends/Soft Extra 3. and perhaps simply giving you their dimensions will help give you an good idea of what they're like (other varieties will of course be different):

They came individually wrapped in a plain blue plastic wrapper and were like a large sanitary-towel (bigger than Night-time ones, more like the sort mum's use just after child birth)
Before they were unpacked they were folded in three and were 4.5 inches by 4 inches (10cm X 11cm) and about three-quarters of an inch thick so they easily fitted in most pockets.
Unfolded they were thus 4.5 inches by 12 (11cm X 30cm) and about quarter of an inch thick
They were slightly body formed so they don't lie flat though.
The absorbent part was 3 inches wide in the middle third and 3.5 inches wide at the two ends the middle third is also thicker.
They have a sticky strip on the outer side to help fix them in place inside your underpants

A lady will wear them in a different place to a man so you will have to experiment a bit to work out exactly whereabouts in your underwear you need to fix them for maximum effect. Unlike a lady the place where a man's pee can leak out can move about both up and down and left and right.
Another problem regarding positioning a pad is to prevent it squashing your scrotum or balls. Again you’ll just have to try it and see.
I ended up with a couple of inches of the pad sticking out of the front of my underwear so that one end was just about touching my navel, that way there were several inches of pad either side of my penis.
If it sticks out you do however need to be careful about how you dress so that it can't be seen and so that there is no wicking of any pee onto your shirt etc. (Sometimes I just took some scissors and snipped off the bit sticking out, but if you do that then you can start shedding white fluff everywhere.)

The pads were also very soft, sometimes I almost forgot they were there. It is the dampness and nature of urine that can make you sore rather than the pad itself, so think nappy rash prevention and wash and dry thoroughly and use a bit of Vaseline or similar cream.

I also tried out some triangular man-pads and some pads of my wife’s that were smaller, but the original ones left me feeling the safest.
As to how many pads you will need per day/night and how long you will need them that is impossible to say as we all seem to have had different experiences on that front. All I can do is wish you a speedy recovery.


Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 38
   Posted 9/29/2010 12:43 PM (GMT -6)   
I have just passed week three after prostate removal which the surgeon was able to save nerves on the left side.I really appreciate all the info from all the wonderful people on this forum. My experiance with this has been so much more bearable because I found this place. Thanks to everyone here!!! I am 42 have not experienced any incontinence issues and Thanks to my wife have had pretty good luck with erection issues. Thanks again I can not express it enough!! PS Tena pads for men worked for me.

Post Edited (teallen) : 9/29/2010 8:27:02 PM (GMT-6)

New Member

Date Joined May 2010
Total Posts : 15
   Posted 9/29/2010 1:59 PM (GMT -6)   
I ahd trouble with pads - not all created equal; the women's version I found iritating. After several trial and error purchases, I settled on Tena for Men...

Good luck on your road back!
March 2010: Biopsy / Gleason 4+3; 40% one side
May 14, 2010: DaVici Prostatectomy (age 63)
P size: 4.6X3.7X3.3 / 40.5grams
Side Effects: Dry Mouth / Swollen scrotum / rash / perennial pain
May 24: Catheter removed! Starting the continence and ED journey
June 16: PSA<.1; little continence improvement
Sept 1: PSA<.1; ED improving!
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