Incontinence Issues - 6 months post surgery

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Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 1/6/2011 4:19 PM (GMT -6)   
I would like to hear from some of the veterans of incontinence recovery. My catheter was removed on 7/29 and I have progressed month to month nearly cutting my urine output in half each month. I have painstakingly measured my progress since mid-August. From 5 pads, I am down to 1 pad for a 13 hour period (my commute and work day) My progress has slowed down. I sort of expected it not to be cut by half each month near the end but that is one of my questions. Right now I leak about 9.5 ml the lowest recorded as of yesterday to around 15 to 17 ml over the last few weeks. I don't gush or squirt out anymore. It's more like a gentle weeping with an occasional spurt. I leak only when I walk or do activity mostly. I kegel if I cough to stop the flow. ( I do kegels laying down, sitting and then standing - 10 short, 10 ten second holds with 10 sec in between - the set of three positions - twice per day) I spurt a bit sitting down or standing up. Sitting is fine, no leaking.

1. Does the leaking slow down to the level I described and then just get less and less until one day I will note a totally dry pad (in my case measure it as the same as dry)?

2. Has anyone experience the same as I have where the last few drops refuse to come out and once the pad goes back on it drains out? Sometimes I have to use TP and blot the tip to get it dry. I swear this operation turns you into a female.!

3. Do you get more false leaking. Feels like leaking but nothing comes out.?

4. I am nearly completely dry for the morning 1 mile walk into work but sputter and weep on my walk back from work the same 1 mile. Is this common?

5. When standing for a long time, I feel a fragility on being able to hold urine. I describe it as having a "hair trigger" for leaking. One small move or jolt and a squirt comes out.

6. Passing gas become a problem sometimes and other times not so much of a problem. Just have to let it nearly come out on its own. Can't ever really forcefully push out gas unless over a toilet. I sure hope this one will get better.

7. Drying oneself after showering. Sometimes no weeping, other times very gentle patting dry or else you might as well take another shower. More "hair-trigger" syndrome.

8. Swear that the pad causes leaking. Just putting it on brings on a spurt that let me know this ordeal is not over yet bub!

9. Feeling that this will never end.

Thanks for any insight you can give. I know the mantra. Give it time. but just wanted to get feedback on how typical or weird my experience is personally. Thanks again. you guys are a wonderful group for support and hope. I keep you all in my thoughts and best wishes.

Mike S.

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 206
   Posted 1/6/2011 4:32 PM (GMT -6)   

Stop fretting and stop measuring.

You are less than 6 months out of some very serious surgery. We dont all heal the same. I still use one pad every day, after one year but I got used to it and it does not bother me. Mind you, I'm likely a lot older than you, at 72, but it's really no big deal.

I'll likely get better over time, if not, I still have a lot of living to do. Pads or no pads.

JB71, still in Canada.
Age, only 71.
July 2009, PSA 9.1, free ratio 0.16
September GLEASON 4+4=8, T2A
Prostate 44cc.
Calcium: 2.46  (range: 2.20 - 2.65 mmol/L)
25 Hydroxy Vitamin D: 102 (range: sufficiency:
76 - 250 nmol/L)
Bone Scan: Negative
CT Scan scheduled for Dec. 1st. Negative.
Started Casodex 50mg. on Nov. 6, first pill of 30.
Got Lupron 22.5mg ( 90 day ) on  November 19.
No real side effects as of Dec. 15 except dry skin and hair but getting quite 'porky' in the belt area even though now I go to the gym, three times a week. Also I dont have a need to shave anymore so now I can save my 'shaving' allowance and direct it to my stash of Depends !
Christmas Day got my first hot flashes. Thanks Santa!
Open surgery done on Jan. 20th. by Dr. J. Chin at London's University Hospital.
Cath removel scheduled for Feb. 8th. Yes, I know,
that will be 19 days. Dr. is out of country until then.
Pathology Report:
Gleason Score: cannot be determined due to hormone therapy effects. ???????
Extraprostatic Extension:
present, left radial, multifocal
present, left basal, multifocal
Resection Margins:
Apical: involved by invasive carcinoma, multifocal
Bladder Neck: involved by invasive carcinoma, unifocal on left side.Other: non-tumoural prostatic present at resection margin.
Perineural Invasion: present.
Seminal Vesicle Invasion: absent
Lymphovascular Invasion: absent
Lymph Node Status: no malignancy in regional lymph nodes
Additional path. findings:
high grade prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia
Pathology Stage: yp T3a NO MX
Radialogist appointment was on Friday Feb. 26 with Dr. Glenn Bauman in London.
Got another Lupron 90 day shot today and he wants to start IMRT soon. CT Scan plus measure scheduled in about 3 weeks. ( march 15)
First PSA test since surgery on March 18th.
with the results of <0.03 !!!
Started a Facebook page for bikers with prostate issues at:
IMRT to started on May 10. Going to get 33 units.

Elite Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25355
   Posted 1/6/2011 4:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Mike, I know its not funny, but your #2 made me laugh at the end. PC makes strange creatures out of all of us at different times. Hope you "dry up" soon.

Age: 58, 56 dx, PSA: 7/07 5.8, 10/08 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/08 7 of 7 Positive, 40-90%, Gleason 4+3
open RP: 11/08, on catheters for 101 days
Path Rpt: Gleason 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% cancer, 1 pos marg
Incont & ED: None
Post Surgery PSA: 2/09 .05,5/09 .1, 6/09 .11. 8/09 .16
Post SRT PSA: 1/10 .12, 4/8 .04, 8/6 .06 11/10 Not taking it
Latest: 6 Corr Surgeries to Bladder Neck, SP Catheter since 10/1/9, SRT 39 Sess/72 gy ended 11/09, 21 Catheters, Ileal Conduit Surgery 9/23/10

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 6856
   Posted 1/6/2011 4:39 PM (GMT -6)   
I am 14 months out from DaVinci, but was at about 4-5 months out when I started radiation. I think I was pretty close - 1 pad a day at that point. It has worsened since, but we blame that on IGRT. But to your points, here is my experience:
1) Some members tell of just drying up one day without warning, so it is possible.
2) Yes - I suspect it has to do with flexing / bending - I try to do a set of kegels while standing after my trip to the pot. That seems to clear it out.
3) Have that.
4) Yes - the pelvic floor muscles get tired just like the rest of the body, so leaking more later in the day happens.
5) Same here.
6) After RT, there is a new rule - don't fart unless sitting on a pot. Period.
7) Had that early on, but it is gone now.
8) It may actually cause a leak. Just the movement and flexing, just like standing up.
9) At three months, I was in the same boat. But it did suddenly get better. Then I reset everything with radiation, so can only blame that on ....  Oh well, yes, at 6 months I had about given up, but I also sorted out that I really did have to accept that there is a "new normal" for some of us, and we have to adjust, so I did.
And just remember, if you stop doing kegels, you might start leaking again. I backed off for a while. Bad idea.
Yes, it gets better. Some because you figure out how to deal with it, and some because you come to understand that some uros think 1 pad per day is "continent". I wish mine had told me that early on.
Keep at it - improvement is almost always possible.
DaVinci 10/2009
My IGRT journey (2010) -

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 7187
   Posted 1/6/2011 4:40 PM (GMT -6)   
C'mon, that's a bit harsh.
The poster expressed a legitimate concern with legitimate questions.

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 346
   Posted 1/6/2011 4:54 PM (GMT -6)   
I leaked really bad for the first 6 month's and it started getting better.
Then I was reading a post here about someone leaking and Casey59 made a comment about alot of it being in your head and that kinda changed my attitude and things really seem to improve after that.
Hope this helps,

Ed C. (Old67)
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 2457
   Posted 1/6/2011 5:09 PM (GMT -6)   
I had the same experience with #2 and #3. I'm almost 2 years out and still experience both of them at times. I don't ware a pad any more but on some days I lose a couple of drops under stressful conditions.
Age: 67 at Dx on 12/30/08 PSA 3.8
2 cores out of 12 were positive Gleason (4+4)
Davinci surgery 2/9/09 Gleason 4+4 EPE,
Margins clear, nerve bundles removed
Prostate weighed 57 grams 10-20% involved
all PSA tests since (2, 5, 8, 11, 15, 18 months) undetectable
Latest PSA test (21 months) .005

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 192
   Posted 1/6/2011 7:07 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Mike,
Reading your symtoms was like reading a list of my own experiences, I'm 7 months out now and still going through 1 pad a day, I was 10-12 for the first month.
In order:
1. don't know, I'm not there yet.
2.nope, it all comes out. I'm still a man, ED finally resolved.
3.yes, to false leaking, I think a drop gets into the urethra and it feels like much more.
4. I have much better control in the morning, I'm worst in late afternoon.
5. Yes, I often leak when standing, if I stand still its OK, if I move suddenly I dribble. I try to stand and pause for a moment, this helps.
6. Passing gas has become a new art form, takes real control to pass one without the other but I have become the master.
7. I get the same thing, drying off and I'll get a renegade drop landing ontop of my foot...ugh.
8. I've been warned not to become pad dependent, I sleep padless. I've tried to go padless for a while before bed but still leak a bit, I put a pad on to save on laundry.
9. My feelings also, I've recently started back into fast walking on the treadmill in order to get some more muscle tone down there, its only been 10 days but I have gone from 1.5 to 1.0 pads in this time span. When I break into a slow jog it all dumps out.
Christmas was my target to be dry and I missed it. I'm assuming it will come just as my erection slowly came back, we really don't have a choice do we.
good luck on your journey to dryness Mike, you're not alone and some are worse than us.
I refuse to quit in my quest to become dry.
age 56
PSA 5.5
Biopsy, both lobes PCa
Gleason 3/4=7
open RP May 18, 2010
Pathology: 15% involved, lymph nodes and v. d. clear, margins clear
June 3-10 10-12 pads/day
2 months 8 pads/day
Aug 1, 2010 5-6 pads/day
Aug 20, 2010 3-5 pads per day
Aug 16, 3 month PSA: undetectable
Sept 22, 2 pads a day
Oct 12, PSA 0.03
Dec 1.5 pads a day
ED OK with no drugs Dec 2010

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 2691
   Posted 1/6/2011 10:01 PM (GMT -6)   
I wish we could give definitive answers for these situations. You will hear men on here who were totally continent from day one. Others have never totally dryed Many are in between.

I went for 8 months, and then went padless. After 21 months, do I ever have a wet spot ? Yes. Do I ever drip a little ? Does exertion cause leakage ? Yes. Do I get worse after a long day ? Yes. Does coffee or iced tea (with sweetner) make it worse ? Yes.

Somewhat like JB above mentioned, I have just learned to live with it. So far, as a Gleason 9, I will trade my .01 dor a drip in my pants. Life is good, and I intend to live every minute of I can, damp underpants or not. I think it is getting a little better, and if I watch what i drink, be careful when I lift or exert myself, I am fine. If walking causes me to me to leak, I wear a pad, or don't walk or whatever it is.

Sometimes I am prone to focus on unimportant things, rather than the big picture like playing with my twin grandsons, making love to my wife, or watching a good football game. I hope you can continue to improve, and make a little dampness a minor thing in your life.
Age 58, PSA 4.47 Biopsy - 2/12 cores , Gleason 4 + 5 = 9
Da Vinci, Cleveland Clinic  4/14/09   Nerves spared, but carved up a little.
0/23 lymph nodes involved  pT3a NO MX
Catheter and 2 stints in ureters for 2 weeks .
Neg Margins, bladder neck negative
Living the Good Life, cancer free  6 week PSA  <.03
3 month PSA <.01 (different lab)
5 month PSA <.03 (undetectable)
6 Month PSA <.01
1 pad a day, no progress on ED.  Trimix injection
No pads, 1/1/10,  9 month PSA < .01
1 year psa (364 days) .01
15 month PSA <.01

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 1/6/2011 10:09 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you for the diversity of answers so far.  I agree but have not wrapped my head around the notion of not being concerned about having a pad.  At least at this point, I am not nearly as concerned with filling a pad to the point of spilling over as I was a few months ago. 
We have entered an alien land and the roadmap to survival is our shared experience.  I agree that a PSA of >0.1 undetectable as I have had from my initial post surgery test is far sweeter sounding than any issue with pads.  Hoping for another good PSA test result this March.   I am still learning to cope with all of this.
Thanks again,
Mike S.

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 121
   Posted 1/7/2011 11:49 AM (GMT -6)   

As you've seen from the replies, and other threads on the subject, not all of us recover from incontinence the same. In fact, I've hardly seen any two guys recover from any of this the same. Back to you list above, I have or do experience 4, 7, 8 and 9. My doctor alerted me to the possibility of 3, but I've not experienced it yet.

I am seeing progress. One day last week I hardly leaked at all. Some days are better than others. I have my first session with an incontinence therapist Monday.

Hang in ther friend.
Age 61, Diagnosed July 2010
PSA 04/09 - 2.5; 05/10 - 3.7; 07/10 - 4.7
DRE and Ultrasound - Negative
Size at biopsy - 32 grams
T1C, 3+3=6, 1 core of 12 60% positive
da Vinci nerve sparing RP 10/29/10
Post op biopsy indicated bilateral Gleason 6 tumors
Continent 90% and hopeful
Minor ED - 85% naturally, 95% with Cialis
6 week PSA - "undetectable"

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2009
Total Posts : 147
   Posted 1/7/2011 1:36 PM (GMT -6)   
I am 20 months out from Davinci and have experienced most of your points.
Point 3 happened quite a bit, but every time I looked I was dry.
I am now 99.99% dry and still experience the after dribble when urinating and yes have to use paper to wipe off, I also use the method of stroking the scrotum upwards which does a good job of emptying the uretha.
I am very carefull on passing wind and found it best to squat on the pan or be very controlled and let it happen gradually.
As said before we all heal at various rates and I hope that you to will soon be fully recovered.
All the best from England.

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 1/7/2011 2:04 PM (GMT -6)   
To All:
Again thanks for the input. More opinions are welcome.
I guess my biggest pet peeve is walking. I am learning to cope with the notion that like many of you the occasional textbook definition of stress incontinence will be part of my life. It is the drip and occasional squirt while walking that drives me nuts. Sweating around the edge of the pad is another one but that is a minor indignity. I just want to walk and not ooze...... I walk gingerly now so that I don't start a squirt festival.

Also lately, since I don't flow with abandon like I did a few months ago, the occasional squirt is more annoying now since being nearly totally wet was a constant before. Not complaining, just observing for myself that I feel the annoying spurts and slow oozing more. I swear the Depend pad sops up the squirts better than the weeping type drip. The weeping type drip seems to stay on the white mesh covering longer rather than being wicked down into the gel reservoir. What is that gel anyway? Glad it does not spontaneously combust or anything like that.

Mike S.

Depends pads may start to be overkill shortly, if not right now with only 15 to 20 cc of fluid for 12/13 hours of wearing.
Dx 56
Biopsy: Gleason 3+3=6, PSA 6.6 One core of 12 with 5% T1c
Surgery: July 2010
Pathology Gleason 6, Neg Margins, Neg Lymph, Neg Sem Vesicles
Recovering from incontinence and ED slowly

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 6856
   Posted 1/7/2011 3:06 PM (GMT -6)   
There are somewhat lighter men's guards out there.
A step down from the Depends is the Tena (I know Tena won't like me saying that), but I mean it in terms of thickness and capacity. The Tena is a wider pad, more triangular, and thinner (fits better), but holds less.
Go to where you can get a free sample of 2 guards, and that will include a coupon against a future purchase.
Tena is available in CVS, and some Kroger stores. They have a page that tells where products are sold.
Coloplast makes a lighter "pad" that is more like a condom. They call them "drip collectors". There are two varieties, Conveen 5410 (penis only) and 5420 (scrotum and penis for those of us who can't find Willie anymore).
They will also send you a pack of one type (packs of 10) as a sample. Those products are expensive, and harder to find in a store.
I agree - I also expected to be one of the "98%" who didn't have any problems, but I was wrong.

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 131
   Posted 1/10/2011 10:28 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks again guys:

I wish this forum could be subdivided to cluster topics together. So many of you have great advice and supportive comments when we are feeling low. You have to work hard to find pertinent stuff since it changes hour to hour.

I know that my friends get on my case for measuring my pads, but thankfully, I am down to only around 15 to 20 cc of urine in a Depends pad in a 12 to 13 hour period. I try to reduce the variables as much as I can. So the 12 hours represents the time I put on a new morning pad after getting showered and ready for work, until I come home at night. My routine is so consistent and repetitive that, in this case, it helps me see if I am reducing my urine output.

So my point is: At 15 to 20 cc of fluid (that's roughly half of one of those plastic cups you get with a Nyquil cold remedy bottle) it would be darn near impossible to tell if anything is in the pad. I hold a 20 cc pad in my hand and it feels nearly the same as a clean dry pad. So to critics of weighing pads with a postal scale, for me it just gives some cleaner way to measure that I am making progress. Otherwise at this point, I would have thought I was not leaking nearly at all since the pad feels so light. Just throwing this out to all if measuring is something one would like to do.

I am game to try the suggestion I just read about a Nordi-trak machine. Everyone who has posted seems to indicate that exercise is crucial to recovery. If I did that, I could see somewhat more objectively if my pad volume went down.

Some have used a skilled incontinence physical therapist and have found that to be helpful. PT's have a slew of exercises that seem to help. Some do absolutely no kegels and just wait for nature to heal them.

I did watch a slow but informative video from Sloan Kettering on incontinence and one of the take home points that was made at the end was that the 12 to 18 month and even further in some cases should be left to run its course before embarking on a surgical procedure. Even my own doctor's stats from Hopkins stress the length of time it may take to gain continence.

In summary, I guess we are all here to be proactive about our future state of being, either from surgical recovery or continued monitoring of our PSA, etc.

Again, thanks for the collective wisdom of what we have been experiencing. It is good to share and know that we are not alone in what we are feeling or how our body is reacting.

Just waiting for my spurting to turn to weeping and my weeping to complete vanish. I would love to get through a long walk without having any leaks, even the weeping kind. I miss that the most right now.

Later, Mike S.

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 121
   Posted 1/10/2011 4:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Today I started wearing Tena pads, per 142's post. They are certainly more comfortable that the Depends. Since I thankfully do not need the capacity, the Tenas should work out well.

This morning I had my first session with an incontinence therapist. She (they are all cute young women it seems) stressed patience and told me to remain optimistic. Most men do get better and there are things far beyond Kegels if necessary. One thing she told me was to watch my diet and liquid intake. Didn't realize so many things irritate the bladder. The second is to try doing exercises lying on my back with knees propped up. Also, men tend to overdo it, so she cautioned me against that.

I had a really good day a week or so ago. While not out of the woods, I am seeing progress. Hang in there friend.
Age 61, Diagnosed July 2010
PSA 04/09 - 2.5; 05/10 - 3.7; 07/10 - 4.7
DRE and Ultrasound - Negative
Size at biopsy - 32 grams
T1C, 3+3=6, 1 core of 12 60% positive
da Vinci nerve sparing RP 10/29/10
Post op biopsy indicated bilateral Gleason 6 tumors
Continent 90% and hopeful
Minor ED - 85% naturally, 95% with Cialis
6 week PSA - "undetectable"

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 417
   Posted 1/10/2011 6:29 PM (GMT -6)   
I too ended prefering the Tena Male pads. Much more comfortable and arguable held almost as much as Depends which were a lot more bulky. Perhaps someone should start a thread just on "different pads for different occasions or conditions". I may just do that for the benefit of any new AUS guys.
As noted in some of my post on the AUS journey, I have tried all kinds of light ladies panty liners to catch residual drops. In my opinion Always Infinity are far superior to any I have tried....more comfortable, don't even know they are there.
Great to see some of you guys are making real progress. Something that never happened for me. I am one of those 2% guys. Still, I am a really happy camper with a normal life after surgery for RP, a Virtue sling and an AUS....all in a two year period. A little leaking is nothing compared to some of the more serious situations some of the guys on the list have with other complications. A little leaking compared to ????? can be a relatively good thing!!!!! tongue
66 year old male
PSA jumped 3 to 8 Jan 2008
pt2b NO Mx with a Gleason score 3+3=6.
DaVinci RP, 7/23/08. Tumor type: Acinar
size 5.5 cm x 5.7 cm weight: 77 gm.
Incontinence & ED. Dry nights , no control during day.
FUDS and cystourethroscopy testing 10/09.
24 hr pad wt. 219gm. AUA sympton index 13/35=moderate
Virtue sling surgery 2/3/10 NYU med center
Appeared to help but gradually returned to pre surgery condition.
Back to 3-4 pads/day.
Latest PSA 4/1/10 negative.
AMS 800 artificial urinary sphincter implanted 7/8/10 at U of MI.
AMS 800 activated 8/25/10 Dry for first time in 2 years.
Links to my journey posts:
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