Dennis & Sara Surgery

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

IlySara
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 18
   Posted 11/18/2006 5:06 PM (GMT -7)   
Well, here i am on the other side of a prostatectomy. Since finding out i had cancer only a little more than a month ago to having my prostate gland removed, i've run through every possible emotion. Strangely enough, i'm running through all that again since the surgery.
 
I had surgery on 11/16/2006. I showed up at Parkridge Hospital at about 5:00am to have the DaVinci Robotic Laparoscopic surgery performed by Dr. Patrick Foley. If anyone is in need of a urologist in the Chattanooga, TN area, he comes with my highest recommendation. He is a straight shooter, not full of crap, tends to be a little on the quiet side, listens more than he talks, doesn't pull punches, and in general doesn't have the cockiness i've seen in so many doctors. Anyway, i was registered, sent to a room, and later prepped for surgery. The anesthesiologist started an IV in each hand. When i asked them "why two," they said it was because of how i'd be reclined for the DaVinci procedure and if anything happened, it would be more difficult to start an IV again. They could've told me "blahblahblahblah" at that point and i would've nodded my head seriously in agreement. lol. Anyway, they gave me a slight buzz, my preacher came in to pray with me, and the next thing i knew i was waking up in a room about 6 hours later with people looking at me and smiling. lol
 
The first night in the hospital, i was very restless, but not in much pain. I was up and walking a couple of times, but they were very short trips since i was so dizzy from all the meds. I remember being extremely thirsty since i'd been on a liquid diet the day before and hadn't had any liquids since the midnight before. The worst pain i felt was rawness from my throat from something they had in my throat during surgery. I have no idea what they did, but that has been my worst pain so far. I got very little sleep the first night, mainly sleeping for about an hour, then waking up for a couple of hours.
 
The following morning, Dr. Foley came in at about 8 and gave me the go ahead to go on home. He debated whether to let me get the catheter out sooner because of my age and health, but decided to go for the full 10 days. He told me that he took extra time on me during surgery to spare both sets of nerves and that everything turned out really well. He expects me to be fully continent and fully able to resume sex within 6 months. I sure hope he's right. He seemed confident that we got all of the cancer inside the prostate gland, and i'm anxious to get the pathology back, but for now i'm just going to concentrate on recovering.
 
The hospital finally got us discharged at about noon, and i swear, i hadn't been home 2 hours when i got a call from their billing dept wanting a check for $400. I got mad at the woman and hung up on her. Anyway, the pain is settling in a little more since i've been home. There's really nothing major about the pain...it's just a general discomfort. Like i said, the worst pain i've had has been my throat. Last night i dealt with gas pains. Before surgery, i was pumped with gas and this stuff is trying to make its way out. That has been the most troublesome thing, and by far the greatest discomfort of the surgery other than the catheter being in the way all the time. Last night, it felt as though i needed to make a bowel movement, but every time i'd try i couldn't push enough to get it done. One thing that i'd definitely recommend for anyone undergoing this surgery.....do NOT take a laxative before you've worked this gas out of your system. Wait a couple of days before using a laxative. The nurse gave me a light one at the hospital before i left, and i really regret having taken that. I should've waited until the gas had subsided.
 
The gas is mostly gone now and the comfort level is increasing exponentially. Sara appreciates the decrease as well, though mainly it was me shooting blanks....very loud, long blanks. LOL. At times i sounded like i had a demon inside my stomach with all the wierd sounds and howls. Eventually it sounded like a WWII battle. Now it's down to nothing, leaving me alone with my hatred for this freaking catheter. I know it's necessary, but hate having this thing attached to me. I'm scared to death that i'm going to forget it's there and do an impression of a dog on a leash. LOL
 
Well, anyway....this is really long-winded and i'm rambling, so i'll shut up now. I really just wanted to leave a history trail here since i've not posted anything. I want to tell you all how much your thoughts and prayers have meant to Sara and I, as well as just being able to read your experiences and know what to expect. That has truly been golden, and i hope to give back somehow. I'm only a couple of days past my surgery, and i hope for someone out there who is considering this surgery that i can help them to decide. I want them to know that it's not bad...the surgery itself is just not painful outside of gas pains afterward.
 
Thank you all for what you're doing here. And most of all, thank you Sara for your steadfast love and for your beautiful prayers. I love you.

41 years old
6.7 PSA
3+3=6 Gleason
Stage T1c


Tamu
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 626
   Posted 11/18/2006 7:11 PM (GMT -7)   
Dennis,

Welcome to the other side. You have been through the worst of it and it will only get better from here on. You will be surprised how well you will feel in just a week. Make sure that you get up and walk often to prevent any blood clots. I am now 18 days post Da Vinci and cannot believe how well I am feeling. The catheter is a nuisance and you will count the days until it is out. I have been five days since the catheter has been removed and have achieved about 80% continence and getting more back everyday. The perineum discomfort hit me worst on about the third day post op. You may want to start some Tylenol and keep it up for a few days as it certainly helped me with the discomfort. You are very young so you should bounce back even quicker then I have. Hope you are catching up on your sleep. Make sure that you do take it easy for a while even after you begin feeling better because inside you have a lot of trauma. I pushed it a little too much and found that in the late afternoon I was totally wiped out. Sounds like you had a good surgeon there in Chattanooga. I had mind done at Vanderbilt in Nashville and I live in northern Alabama.

Good luck and thanks for committing to helping others get to the other side.

Tamu
Diagnosed 7/6/06
1 of 10 core samples, 40%
Stage T1c, Gleason 3+3
Da Vinci on 11/01/06
56 Years Old
Post Op Path
Gleason 3+3
Prostate Confined


M. Kat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 715
   Posted 11/19/2006 8:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Yeah Dennis and Sara! I'm glad that part is over, now to put up with the catheter for a little while, and then you'll continue your recovery. Jeff said the worst part for him was the catheter. it'll be out before you know it. thank you for sharing your story. take care....kat
Husband Jeff 56 years old
diagnosed July 27, 2006
PSA 6.5
2 positive areas in biopsy, Gleason 3+3=6
Radical Retropubic Prostatectomy August 30, 2006
pathology report - all clear - cancer gone
1st post-surgery PSA test 0.1
no more pads Oct 12, 2006


JayMan56
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 61
   Posted 11/19/2006 10:48 AM (GMT -7)   
Dennis and Sara, thanks for the rambling essay.... I am a few weeks away from the DaVinci and I'm soaking up all the information I can get my hands on..... keep posting away!!!

Jay
  • 56 year old male, divorced
  • Diagnosed: 10/12/06
  • Two of twelve samples contained malignent cells, Gleasons: 3+3=6, 3+4=7
  • Last PSA as of 11/5/06: 2.3
  • Scheduled a DaVinci Robotic procedure for Feb 6th
  • In control, but partially terrified about the future
  • Click (or paste) this link to watch the DaVinci Procedure: http://www.or-live.com/ShawneeMission/1664/event/webcast.cfm?


lawink
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 621
   Posted 11/19/2006 11:25 AM (GMT -7)   
Am enjoying following your story as well Dennis and Sara --- a word to Jayman . . . . .we NEED a "Jayman's Journey" . . . .thread so we can follow your journey easily as well. Could you do that for us Jay??

You'll do just fine . . .we relate to the anxious waiting -- biopsy results in May an surgery 4 months later (from an originally anticipated late November). Once you find out you just want it done and to move on!!!!

;o) Linda & Bob
Bob (60) had laproscopic prostate surgery on Sept 27, 2006 - 2/12 malignant biopsy samples - gleason 3 + 3 = 6.  Follow up PSA results and pathology results received Nov 14th are NO MORE CANCER!  Gleason changed to a 3 + 4; cancer completely confined to prostate; (even a second more agressive, previously undetected cancer)      PSA UNDETECTABLE.
 
Bob also takes Hydroxyurea to control Polycythemia (elevated red & white cells & platelets) has secondary condition . . Myelofibrosis) -- If anyone has experience or knowledge of these, please post us.


IlySara
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 18
   Posted 11/19/2006 9:26 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you all!!!!

Hang tough, JayMan....going into that procedure was the scariest event of my life because i am a major sissy about needles and getting cut. I've been healthy as a horse my whole life, and never had surgery except for having wisdom teeth cut out. It's not something i'd ever want to do again, but i have to say that it was nowhere near as bad as i'd dreamed it would be, and the post-op pain in my case has been almost nil outside of the gas and the raw throat. And from what i'm reading from the veterans here, the functions will come back to one degree or another depending on a lot of variables. That's our next hurdle!
41 years old
6.7 PSA
3+3=6 Gleason
Stage T1c
7/12 Positive Samples in Biopsy
RLP on 11/16/2006
Shoe Size 10 lol


bluebird
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 2542
   Posted 11/19/2006 9:35 PM (GMT -7)   
Dennis & Sara,
We are so happy to hear things went so well. Dennis it is really great to hear from you!!!
It seems you've both done extremely well with handling your diagnosis and getting ready for surgery.... and now it's over!!!!!!
Take time to heal and know Mr. Hang is your friend. :)
We will continue to keep you in our thoughts and prayers.
In Friendship, Lee & Buddy

mama bluebird - Lee & Buddy… 53 on surgery day

RRP April 3, 2006   PSA 4.6 Gleason  3+3=6  T2a   Confined to Prostate

June 29th PSA Less than 0.1 Non-detectable


hamala
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 54
   Posted 11/20/2006 1:11 AM (GMT -7)   

Dennis,

Glad to hear you are doing well.  Though challenges are ahead, it is such a relief being post surgery as all pre surgery worries are behind you.  I am also 41 like you and still at times cannot believe I was diagnosed with prostate cancer.  I also realized, it does not matter what age you are when prostate cancer strikes, it sucks!  Thanks for sharing your experience as it is always good to compare notes and others on the same path benefit from the information.  I wish you fast healing and remember to walk, walk, walk as it helps tremendously with the healing process.

Michael


Age:41, Lump found on routine physical. PSA:1.4, 2 of 13 cores positive, Gleason:6, DeVinci surgery on 8/8/2006


IlySara
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 18
   Posted 1/22/2007 2:18 PM (GMT -7)   
Ok, i've been a serious slacker about posting here, but i was reading through it today and thought i'd jump back in if only for a while! Here's the latest:

My catheter was removed 10 days after the surgery, and i've never felt such relief in my life. Barely needed any pads....i've had very slight leakage here and there from stress and once at night a couple of days after it was removed. Other than that, i'm good to go.

I was back at work 3 weeks to the day after surgery. I still felt tired fairly easily, but that got better with each passing day. I'd say i was back to 100% energy level at about the 4 week mark.

As i said in another post, i got my first erection early in the morning on day 6 after the surgery....with the catheter still in. OUCH! Those were fairly common, but things have dwindled so to speak since. Everything operates properly with viagra, but there's not much in the way of morning wood like pre-op, and it takes longer to get there. Dr. Foley said it would be a good 6 months, so we're gonna keep up the PT! lol

And now for the BEST news....i got my first PSA test back with the perfect result....<0.1 or undetectable. THAT'S the important thing here. Dr. Foley told me again at my last appointment that i was a lucky man in how this cancer was caught. I prefer to think of it as God watching over Sara and me (yes, "me" is the correct grammar in that sentence. LOL). Anyway, he reiterated that if not for Dr. James deciding to do PSA tests on her male patients 40 and older instead of 50 and older, this might not have been caught. According to Dr. Foley there was a "lot" of cancer in there that went undetected with DREs and the ultrasound. He said i probably would've been 47 or 48 years old and showed up to the doctor with tumors on my spine and hips, and they'd be giving me about 2 years to live at that point. God is good and He has a purpose for me here i suppose.

Anyway, thank you all again! I hope my ramblings can help someone or give them hope. It was a crushing blow to find out i have cancer. All my life i've never been seriously ill other than a case of pneumonia. I'd never had surgery before, and honestly the thought of being there scared me more than the cancer. To learn you have something that could kill you wakes you up to just how mortal you really are. Cancer is a horrible word to hear. It goes from being head knowledge to sinking into your heart that you will die one day. Then there are the secondary issues of incontinence and impotence to face. It's not an easy road, but it's not impossible either. With much prayer, support from my beautiful wife, family, and friends, along with a bull-headed determination to just get through this, i've made it to the other side and i'm okay. You can be too.
41 years old
6.7 PSA
3+3=6 Gleason
Pre-op Stage T1c
7/12 Positive Samples in Biopsy
RLP on 11/16/2006
Cancer confined to prostate


spinbiscuit
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 818
   Posted 1/22/2007 3:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Dennis & Sara,

That is certainly a great Story about a scary Diagnosis. The All Mighty has blessed you both, and we pray that you will continue to recover. Also wonderful news about your first PSA score. Please keep us updated on your progress when you get a chance.

Glen
Diagnosed at age 60
PSA went from 2.2 to 3.8 in 14 months
2 of 14 cores positive at 10%
Gleason 6(3+3), negative DRE, neg. boundaries
DaVinci surgery on 02/23/06
 


bluebird
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 2542
   Posted 1/23/2007 11:44 AM (GMT -7)   

Dennis & Sara,

*&^%$#@    WOO HOO!!  (*&^%$#  undetectable!!!!!!

 

Cause for celebration!!!!! 

What a wonderful day it is each and every-day…. Enjoy it to the fullest.

 

Yippeeeee!!!!!! From  Lee & Buddy


mama bluebird - Lee & Buddy… from North Carolina

Link to our personal journey…>>>     Our Journey ~ Sharing is Caring 

April 3, 2006  53 on surgery day

RRP / Radical Retropubic Prostatectomy with "wide excision"

PSA 4.6   Gleason  3+3=6    T2a   Confined to Prostate

June 29th ~ PSA Less than 0.1 Non-detectable


jetguy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 741
   Posted 1/24/2007 6:06 AM (GMT -7)   
Congratulations, Dennis. Great news.

I go to a nurse practitioner and she insisted on PSA screening also. The DRE and ultrasound didn't show mine either. Sometimes ya just gotta' be lucky.

Bill
Gleason 3+3=6, T1c, one core in twelve, another pre-cancerous.
62 years old and good health.  Married 37 years.  To same woman!


BenEcho10
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 133
   Posted 1/24/2007 7:34 AM (GMT -7)   
Congratulations on the undetectible PSA. That is wonderful news.

Ben
DIAGNOSIS: 09/25/06. Age 49. PSA 4.6. PSA free 2%. Clinical pathology: Gleason 10. Stage T2a.           
 
SURGERY: 11/08/06. RP at Johns Hopkins. Surgical pathology Gleason 10. Stage T3a (positive margins.) Negative seminal vesicles, lymph nodes, and bone scan.
 
POST OP: 12/15/06: First post op PSA was 0.00.


M. Kat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 715
   Posted 1/24/2007 11:04 AM (GMT -7)   
YEAH Dennis and Sara on the PSA!! you've passed another hurdle and can now concentrate on potency therapy! have fun! I'm glad the continence has gone so well, too. God bless, kat
Husband Jeff 56 years old diagnosed July 27, 2006
PSA 6.5, 2 positive areas in biopsy, Gleason 3+3=6
Radical Retropubic Prostatectomy August 30, 2006
pathology report - all clear - cancer gone
1st post-surgery PSA test 0.1, 2nd post-surgery PSA test 0.1
no more pads Oct 12, 2006
first "real" erection with use of pump 12/16/06


IlySara
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 18
   Posted 12/23/2007 11:26 PM (GMT -7)   

Here's a blast from the past! It's been a long time since i posted here. I was reading through some of the more recent posts and i wanted to give an update to maybe give some hope to guys and wives who have been recently diagnosed with PC. My story has been miraculous and i want anyone who reads my story to know that i'm not boasting in any way. I know that my situation could have gone completely the opposite direction through no doing of my own. I've done nothing more than what my doctors told me to, so i have no reason to boast of beating anything.

I'm a little over one year post-op and my latest PSA is still undetectable. Thank God. I regained continence very soon after surgery and i have had no need of ED meds since about 8 months post-op. Dr. Foley congratulated me, telling me that one more year of undetectable PSA tests and i'm out of the woods. Whether that's completely true or not, i don't know, but i do know that Sara and i have been very blessed by how things have worked out. We've been blessed from God Himself, blessed to have friends and the prayers and support that they gave, and blessed that Sara found this website not long after i was diagnosed. This site has been a source of much strength for both of us. Okay, so honestly this site has been a source of fear as well, knowing that things could be much worse than they turned out to be.

Through this ordeal we've come to know how precious our lives are. We've been given, at best, 100 years to live here on this earth, and facing cancer like we did has made us realize even more how precious this time is. Nothing can make you realize that more than a diagnosis of cancer, whether caught early, like mine was, or late. Obviously God has a reason for my healing, and i'm more determined than ever to find the purpose He has for me.

I hope by posting here that i can encourage someone who is just being diagnosed with PC. Things aren't always horrible. Pray and stand fast. Do what the doctors tell you. Research. Lean on friends for strength. Most of all, know that God is with you and that He will give you peace through Jesus Christ, a peace that surpasses all understanding. May God richly bless everyone who reads this.

Yours in Christ,

Dennis and Sara


6.7 PSA @ 40 years old, asymptomatic, 10/13/2006
3+3=6 Gleason
Pre-op Stage T1c
7 of 12 Positive Samples in Biopsy
Da Vinci on 11/16/2006
Cancer confined to prostate
PSA undetectable 1 year post-op, 0% ED


bluebird
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 2542
   Posted 12/29/2007 9:13 PM (GMT -7)   

  tongue Yea !  ~   Dennis & Sara,

 

1st  Year !!!~~~>>>  Woo~Hoo  <<<~~~!!! Undetectable

 

November 16th, 2007… a year ~ cancer free!!!

An anniversary really worth celebrating!!!

 

Cause  for   celebration!!!!!  Definitely!!!

What a wonderful day it is ~ each and every-day….   

Enjoy it to the fullest. 

*     *     *     *     *     *

The ultimate “goal”… we all strive for… Thank you for continuing to share!

It is very important to “all ”of us!  This is a way of positive feedback…

A way of showing others Hope… and a way of Sharing.  

J  Caring is Sharing ~  Thank You for Sharing  J

 

Happy Every-Day

mama bluebird - Lee & Buddy… from North Carolina

 

v          We invite you to visit our personal thread:  Click Here:  “Our Journey” ~ Sharing is Caring 

April 3, 2006  53 on surgery day

RRP / Radical Retropubic Prostatectomy

PSA 4.6   Gleason  3+3=6    T2a   Confined to Prostate

3rd PSA 08-07-2007 Less than 0.1 Non-Detectable :)


Tim G
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2248
   Posted 12/29/2007 10:38 PM (GMT -7)   
\O/ \O/ \O/ Three cheers, Dennis and Sara!
 
Prostate cancer is difficult.  Here's something I ran across recently that  speaks to my  emotions in my own prostate cancer journey.
 
Now there are spaces in the mind, spaces in the days and nights.  Often, when we least expect it, the pain and preoccupation come back, and back--sometimes like a rolling crash of an ocean wave, sometimes like the slow ooze after a piece of driftwood is lifted and the water and sand rise to claim their own once more.  This process goes on for a very long time.
 
(Martha Hickman)


Age 59 PSA 2.6 (PSA velocity--quadrupled in 1yr) 
Bilateral nerve-sparing open RRP 6/21/06  Gleason 5
Cancer confined to prostate, post-op PSA's non-detectable

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
Forum Information
Currently it is Wednesday, December 13, 2017 2:33 AM (GMT -7)
There are a total of 2,904,691 posts in 318,782 threads.
View Active Threads


Who's Online
This forum has 158164 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, Sickaz.
189 Guest(s), 1 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
Subdenis