My appointment with the Da Vinci surgeon is this coming week (Jan 21st). Here is the list I have thus far. Please help add to this list.Questions about the doctor:
Questions about my preparation:
- How many procedures have you performed? (I know the answer to this one already... Over 6,000.)
- How many do you do per day?
- How many patients have you treated who are my age?
- Will you personally be operating the console for the entire surgery? What is the role of the other surgeons in the room during the surgery?
Questions about the surgery:
- What is the purpose of the prostate trans-rectal MRI? How soon can I get that done? (My prostate biopsy was Jan 17th.)
- Are there other tests that I should have to determine the exact size, location, and aggressiveness of the cancer?
- What can I be doing TODAY to prepare my body for the surgery and to reduce side effects? (Kegel exercises? How much is too much?)
- If I decided this week, when would we do the surgery?
Questions about the outcome:
- Explain the procedure… pre op, op and post op.
- What may be removed other than the prostate itself (nodes, etc)? How and when will you decide what to remove?
- Will you attempt to preserve the internal (top)/external (bottom) sphincter urethra muscles?
- Is the fact that my prostate is relatively small (21g) likely to make the surgery less difficult for you or less difficult for my body?
- How will you manipulate/remove the prostate using the robotic tools without tearing the capsule (possibly causing cancer cells to be "spilled" inside my body)?
- What will you do to spare the nerves around the prostate?
- How is bleeding controlled?
- How many openings will you need to make for the robotic components?
- Is the size of the incision above the belly button related to the size of the prostate?
- How big of an incision should I expect?
- How will the incision be closed? I have heard of people who have had their incision become herniated after a few months. When will the stitches/staples/etc be removed?
- How are the loose ends of the vas deferens closed? If there are clips applied, what material are they made of any how do you ensure that they never open?
- Will the surgery involve changes to my bladder capacity?
Questions about recovery:
- What are the outcomes of your patients that are my age (cancer cure, incontinence, ED)?
- How about these side effects over time, i.e. quality of life 2-3, 5-10, 15+ years out?
- I have heard reports of penis size reductions that have occurred due to prostatectomy. Is that true, and what will be done to prevent/minimize it?
- What tests/monitoring will be necessary to track whether the cancer returns (in the prostate or elsewhere nearby)?
- How soon after the surgery will I get the pathology report?
- If the cancer returns, what's next?
* How long should I expect to need a catheter?
* What role does your staff play in my post op recovery?
* What rehabilitation strategies will I use after the surgery to minimize incontinence/ED? (Daily 25mg of Viagra? Vacuum pump?)
* How soon can I return to work?
* How soon can I return to my regular daily workout regimen (aerobic/weights/cycling)?
* How soon can I return to sexual activity?
* When would you want to do the first post-surgery PSA test, and what would you expect for results?
* What is your role vs. my urologists' role in my recovery and care: 1) treating side effects from the surgery; 2) long-term monitoring for cancer recurrence;Other:
* I'm told that if I have radiation as my primary treatment, that surgery is still an option as a salvage therapy. Do you agree?
* Will you be available to me via phone and/or email for the first week or two after the surgery?(Oddly, it is only possible to have 4 bulleted lists in a post, and after that it stops working.)
Wife + 5 kids
Prostate size 21g
Positive 5 of 12 Cores: G3+4 40%, G3+4 5%, G3+4 10%, G3+4 15%, G3+3 10%
Diagnosed 1/28/13Latest update (as of 2/12):
CT scan and Bone scan done (negative).
Met Dr. D. Nori (brachy, Weill-Cornell), and consulted with Dr. Michael Zelefsky (brachy, Sloan Kettering). Next comes Dr. Ash Tewari (LARP, Weill-Cornell).
Post Edited (gedman) : 2/20/2013 6:03:23 AM (GMT-7)