Thinking ahead ... pre-surgery questions?

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Izzyblizzy
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 411
   Posted 1/4/2007 7:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Just some questions running through my head as I contemplate the fact that we are probably going to undergo da vinci surgery (unless our minds change):
 
1)  Did you bank blood?  Ken is AB negative which is a rare blood type.  I know blood loss is less with da vinci but did anyone bank their blood (for either open or da vinci?)
 
2)  Has anyone heard of H2U.com??
While checking out the hospital where the robotic guy does his procedures here, the hospital offered an H2U membership (for $15 per year) which says:
 
Benefits for H2U members at this affiliate:

Hospital VIP Benefits

> Upgrade to a private room if available

> Complimentary $6 meal coupon for friend or family each day the the h2u member is an inpatient

> Friendly visit from h2u representative

> Free fax and copying service in the h2u office

I have to call and ask is this really a "free" upgrade to private room if available?  Upgrade to me at hotels, etc. means "free".  (the local hospital office wasn't open when I called, will try again tomorrow).   I can't believe they would offer that for $15 a year.  But even so, the meal coupons might be worth it.  Just wondering if anyone had heard of this?

3)  Our house is basically built on a mountainside and there are lots of floors with lots of stairs.  I know it is important to walk alot after surgery, but how soon can one do stairs?

Thanks,

Tanya

 

 

 
 
 
 
Signficant Other diagnosed: 10/30/06 (age 63)
PSA: 3.7 (up from 3.4 prior year)
Gleason: 3+3
Biopsy: 1/10 positive, 5% cancerous, right apex.
Treatment:  Undecided


spinbiscuit
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 818
   Posted 1/4/2007 8:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Tanya & Ken,

1) Generally daVinci procedures do not require the banking of blood, but because Ken is AB neg. I would ask the surgeon if it wouldn't be a good idea just in case.

2) Sorry I have not heard of H2U, and when something is advertised as "Free" I get suspicious.

3) As soon as I awoke from my daVinci procedure the nurse encouraged me to get up and walk, and about 24 hours later I was in my car headed home. Our house has lots of stairs (3 levels) so I was up and down the stairs constantly. Sitting was the tough part till I got a nice soft pillow.

I will caution Ken not to lift anything heavier than 15 lbs. for at least 3 months after surgery. This will allow time for proper healing.

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
 


Izzyblizzy
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 411
   Posted 1/4/2007 8:19 PM (GMT -7)   
yeah, i am suspicious of this "membership" too, if it is only $15 to get upgraded to a private room, why wouldn't EVERYONE who was scheduling surgery do it (and then how many private rooms would be available)? I somehow think that the "friendly visit by a an H2U rep" is going to try to sell us a condo in vegas or at an old-folks home :) But might still call and check it out.

Thanks for the advice on the other stuff. Good to hear stairs won't be a problem.
Signficant Other diagnosed: 10/30/06 (age 63)
PSA: 3.7 (up from 3.4 prior year)
Gleason: 3+3
Biopsy: 1/10 positive, 5% cancerous, right apex.
Treatment:  Undecided


biker90
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1463
   Posted 1/4/2007 8:59 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey Tanya,

It sounds like a lot of stuff for $15 so what have you got to lose?

I had open surgery and was told not to do more that one flight of stairs a day for a while. (All my wife's work is in the basement so this got me a rest...) The doc also said not to lift anything heavier than a gallon milk jug but the rules for robotic are probably differentl. I just had my 4 weeks post-op checkup yeaterday and he said I can do anything I want now.

I did not bank any blood and didn't need any during the surgery. I am also AB and I have had hepatitis so my blood isn't any good for any one else either. Our decision to go with RRP was based on our confidence in the surgeon more that on the particular procedure. And he really came through!!!

See ya...

Jim
Age 72. Diagnosed 11/03/06. PSA 7.05. Stage T2B Gleason 3+3.
RRP 12/7/06. Nerves and nodes okay.
Pathological stage: T2B. Gleason 3+4. Cancer confined to prostate.
PSA on 1/3/07 - 0.04.  Next PSA on 4/4/07.
 
            "Cancer feeds on fear.  Starve it to death."


Izzyblizzy
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 411
   Posted 1/4/2007 9:38 PM (GMT -7)   
thanks jim,
 
yeah it does sound like a good deal, which makes me a skeptic :)
 
i am just trying to decide whether to make our bedroom the main recovery room (two flights above the main level) or try to do it in the main living room.  (half-flight off of main level). 
 
will definitely ask surgeon about blood banking tomorrow, i just like to hear people's experiences here, because sometimes they are more real-life than what the doctor will tell you.  :)  I am thinking not necessary, but also thinking "what if?"
 
 
 
 
Signficant Other diagnosed: 10/30/06 (age 63)
PSA: 3.7 (up from 3.4 prior year)
Gleason: 3+3
Biopsy: 1/10 positive, 5% cancerous, right apex.
Treatment:  Undecided


hawkfan75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 165
   Posted 1/5/2007 12:10 AM (GMT -7)   

I'm scheduled for the robotic surgery January 19.  I am basically in the same situation as you, with one core positive at 5%, and two others,  not cancer, but....  My doctor had me give two units of blood, I'm sure to have on hand just in case.  (I've given blood for years, so this was no big deal.)  A friend of mine had the robotic surgery November 1, and he's back to normal, even referring high school basketball games with me.  While I know he is on the very positive side, I'm working out and looking forward to similar results.

Good luck..


M. Kat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 715
   Posted 1/5/2007 4:55 AM (GMT -7)   
Tanya - Jeff did not bank any blood, but I have heard of others doing that. I don't see how it could hurt. I also haven't heard of h2u, but it may be worth checking out. of course, a private room would only be had "if available" and if he's not in the hospital very long, $6 worth of food won't matter either. we have one flight of stairs and they weren't a problem. I don't think the stairs will really bother him. like others have said, it's more important that he not lift anything for a while. best wishes to you!! 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


GreenAcres
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 474
   Posted 1/5/2007 7:28 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi, Iz - I recommend going into girl scout mode and be prepared for anything. (x-treme, maybe) For one thing, you don't know how Ken will respond to the anesthesia or even the surgery itself. You don't know if - for some unforeseen reason - he might have to stay an extra day.

We did not bank blood, either. As far as stairs, husb. came home with a huge black and blue scrotum and intense pain for almost a week. So, it was up only as required to empty bag and eat. (OK, we did sit on the deck for cigars and drinks after a few days - life's no fun without a vice or two.) Walking was almost entirely out of the question. Just one of those things. Rare, but you never know.

This is not to make you worry, but just to be prepared for anything.

We were very fortunate - the hospital had only private "suites" and I wouldn't have even considered going back to the hotel. Throughout the night, about every 30 minutes, husb. was thirsty, but not enough out of the anesthesia to do anything for himself. Couldn't even have found the call button at that point. Others are up and at 'em in a couple of hours or so following surgery. Everyone reacts differently, so you never know.

This is major surgery, but remember that the pain is only for a few hours and at most a few days as it diminishes drastically. As soon as the catheter came out, I had to keep an eye on him every minute - to keep from overdoing. At the 8-week clearance mark, he was building a retaining wall.

This part of it will go quickly, too, so just get ready for seeing Ken back to normal in no time!
Husband age 65
PSA on 5/1/06: 4.2 (had doubled in 13 mos. and rising monthly)
DaVinci Surgery 8/2/06
T2a (at biopsy)
T4c (at pathology) w/cancer cell leakage into fatty tissue
Post-Surgical PSA on 10/3/06 - undetectable!
Update: 11/1/06 - perhaps bladder neck involvement; 30%-50% chance of recurrence
Future: PSA tests twice-yearly for now
 


Izzyblizzy
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 411
   Posted 1/5/2007 11:51 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for the responses and different experiences Kat and Green.

Hawkfan ... welcome to the forum ... situations do sound very similar. Unfortunately I don't know when our surgery is yet. Was hoping to schedule today but had to move our appointment to the 16th due to ANOTHER snowstorm here in CO. But keep us updated on yours, will be following with interest.

Is Hawkfan for Iowa Hawkeyes? (used to live in Iowa for about 15 years before moved here), or some other Hawks?
Signficant Other diagnosed: 10/30/06 (age 63)
PSA: 3.7 (up from 3.4 prior year)
Gleason: 3+3
Biopsy: 1/10 positive, 5% cancerous, right apex.
Treatment:  Undecided


kw
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 883
   Posted 1/6/2007 2:10 PM (GMT -7)   

I had the open RRP.  Before surgery my dr. said they hardly ever have to give blood.  That held true during my surgery.   But either that evening or the next day I was give two units in my hospotal room.  I had a bleed and they needed to boost my system.  I was also not prepaired to see my swolen, black and blue scrotum. And the sight of the catheter "cramed" up the ol' boy!!!!!  But, you soon get used to it.  I had urine leaking out of my penis around the cathiter.  The Dr. put me on some med for a overactive bladder.  I was having the urge to push to urinate while the cathiter was in.  When I first came home I wore the belted depends undergarments.  I had to use 1/2 of a woman's maxi pad and tape it around the cathiter tube to stop the leaking.  My wife also bought a light weight robe and sewed it up the middle to make me a gown to wear.  I guess she didn't like me wearing hers!!!!....heheheh  I stayed in it for about the first two weeks at home before I switched to shorts and sweats.

Hope some of this info helps.....

Good Luck....kw

 


    43
    PSA 5.7 - Discovered during Annual Physical with Family Practice Dr.
    Gleason 7
    Biopsy - 3 of 12 positive (up to 75%) all on left side of prostate
    RRP on Oct. 17, 2006 - Nerves on right side saved.
    All Lab's clear.  No Cancer outside prostate
    Cathiter in for 3 weeks due to complications in healing. Removed Nov. 9, 2006
    First Post op PSA on Dec. 11, 2006  Undetectable 0.00
    Next Office Visit Feb. 12, 2007
   


hawkfan75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 165
   Posted 1/7/2007 12:09 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi Iz

My "Hawkfan" name comes from the Seattle Seahawks.  I just got home from our thrilling victory over the Dallas Cowboys.  I've had Seahawk season tickets for 30 years, so these victories are very sweet.  (Sorry Dallas fans - was TO worth the money??)  It was nice to get into this game and my thoughts of my cancer and surgery put into a second area of my thoughts.  If the NY Giants win out and the Hawks also, we would have the NFC Championship game here at Qwest field, but I'd miss that one since my surgery is two days before.  While the da vinci is good, I can't see myself going to a game with a catheder!

After reading many posts on this and other forums, I am glad that I'm attacking this cancer with vigor by undergoing a radical procedure.  My older half brother was diagnosed at age 55, but he never had regular physicals, had many positive cores,  and when they opened him up, just stopped.  Fortunately, external radaition and hormones have kept him alive 12 years later, but he knows that anytime it could get him. 

My biggest concern going into this surgery is the incontinence issue.  Some seem to do great, while others have definite problems.  A fellow high school basketball referee friend of mine had his Da vinci November 1 and is refereeing games today.  He is obviously on the upper end of the scale.  If I can get there in 8 weeks, I'd  be very happy.

Hang in there, and good luck with your decision and results.

Go Seahawks!!!!!!!


Izzyblizzy
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 411
   Posted 1/7/2007 3:17 PM (GMT -7)   
ahhhh .... i am not to into pro football :) I suppose now that I am a denverite I should follow the Broncos, but I don't. Like college football some, but mostly go crazy for college basketball :)

that's too bad about your older half-brother (do you share a mother or a father? If that isn't too personal). But at least you knew you had to be tested! Ken has always been paranoid about it, because his father had it, and has been "over-biopsied" probably, but at least he caught it early like you. We are already all over his son to get a PSA at 38 so at least he has a baseline. But he isn't one to like to go to a doctor. So it is is probably going to be constantly nagging, but we have his wife on our side.

Good luck with your surgery. Will let you know when ours gets scheduled. I am starting to get anxious about that.

P.S. Bluebird started your own thread for you.
Signficant Other diagnosed: 10/30/06 (age 63)
PSA: 3.7 (up from 3.4 prior year)
Gleason: 3+3
Biopsy: 1/10 positive, 5% cancerous, right apex.
Treatment:  Undecided


hawkfan75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 165
   Posted 1/7/2007 11:56 PM (GMT -7)   
My half brother is on my mothers side, and 10 years older than me.  Since he moved across the country 20 years ago, I didn't know much about his diagnosis and treatment.  I have been having regular physicals for many years, mostly to keep up with my cholestrol, etc.  When I got my blood work back in October, my PSA of 4.7 didn't raise up a red flag until my doctor called and recommended me seeing a uroligist.  Then is was right to the Internet, and that's how I found this forum.  One thing I realize is that more men and their partners need to be better informed.  Even with my brother with the disease, I was terribly uninformed.  It's been a quick study.  He fully supports my decision on surgery, and states how fortunate that I discovered it early and have options. 
Even so, it's weird being in good shape and having no symptons or problems, but getting ready to undergo a radical procedure that will change my life forever.  However, knowing that if I don't attack this agressively, besides the fact it will always be in my thoughts, it will only get worse, and nobody knows when or how much.  I want forever to be a lot longer than the magic 10 year reoccurance figures they always bring up.  Having that post surgery pathology report will be the key.  While it could show only a minimal amount of cancer, it could be more.  When you throw 10 darts at a dartboard, you can't hit every number.  I'll feel good knowing the extent, and if there is something else I have to do, then I'll get that done.  If the news is good, then I'll only have to think about it once a year after my physical and blood report.
We'll be in touch over this forum, and good luck to you too!
Go Seahawks!!
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