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9 Days Until Surgery. Any tips?

Lucky64
Posts: 29
Joined: Jun 2017

Hi Guys,

Is there a sticky with tips on how to prep for robotic surgery? I've been doing my kegels, bought several sweat pants, gone Vegan, got various lotions...What else should I be doing? 

The first few days, how mobile are you? Do you lay in bed? Sit in a chair and watch TV? Zonked out on pain killers? 

Thanks,

Nick

hewhositsoncushions
Posts: 274
Joined: Mar 2017

Hi

Based on my very recent experience...

Carry on with weight loss and do as much cardio and core work as possible (health permitting). 9 days of really hard sweat will give you massive fitness gainz (:)). I was told that I needed to be as fit and light as possible to reduce the load on the pelvic floor. I hired a pro trainer / dietician pair to put me through the wringer. It was worth it - very little incontinence (only when I laugh at comedies or fart:)) and I had a semi a week after the operation. Trust me on this - fitness helps!

Post op I found the first three or four days I was wiped out - very hard to move the waist and it felt like i had been pummeled by Mike Tyson. Be gentle to yourself.

Painkillers and the other drugs are your friend but don't let the abscence of pain fool you into overdoing it!!!!! Watch your regime - I slacked off towards the end as I got complacent. Particularly watch out you don't chicken out on the blood thinning jabs if you have them. They suck big time but you need to keep at them. I suggest you do not shave whilst on thinners!

Get up and moving slowly but steadily as soon as you can.

Wear compression stockings for at least a week.

Look after your catheter like your innards depend on it - they do! Don't do what I did which was fall asleep on the sofa and have it fill up! You will find it a bit bloody to start with but that should tail off. TWOCcing at the end of the week is both a nightmare and a relief!

Hydrate to keep the bladder working - it will probably hurt when you pee (worst when you are nearly empty in my case) but keep at it.

Work hard to keep your wounds clean and secure. I had six 3/4" cuts (waist) and one drill hole (pubic bone area) and several lost their superglue fairly quickly and needed dressing. If they get iffy go back for help. Watch out for your clothing and bedding as the weeping causes bad staining.

Watch out for bloating in the stomach and ball sack and pain as the gas moves around. You will need to be gentle with yourself and keep your balls supported as they may swell up to comedy size - mine were like cantaloupes :)

Showers only until the wounds heal but keep a good hygiene going for mind as well as body.

Even after two and a half weeks I still feel very tired and feel trapped. Your mind will be a bigger battle than your body in the long run.

Good luck!

C

JS2017
Posts: 7
Joined: Jul 2017

Good advice here. Thanks.

Clevelandguy
Posts: 456
Joined: Jun 2015

Hi,

I can only comment on my post op situation.  They had me up and walking the same day of the surgery in the hospital(trips up & down the hall) and sitting in a chair.  Went home the next day and got up a couple of times per day to walk inside my house because the doc told me to walk(I was kind of shy of walking down the street with my "bag").  Sat in a chair the rest of the time for the first few days getting up to get food & water and empty the bag.  I did not use my pain meds they gave because I had very little pain.  Had to keep an eye on my Davinchi holes(5 of them) to make sure they were healing OK.  I used neosporan on the end of my "member" where the cath hose came out to help lube it.  Make sure you keep all of the cath stuff clean per your doc instructions, very important, don't want a infection.  The best is having the cath pulled out in about 10 days post surgery.  I took sponge baths for the first few days to keep my incisions from getting soaked in the shower.  I also slept on the couch because it kept me lower to the ground than my bed, it kept the cath from pulling during sleep.  I was home for two weeks and just took it easy(very boring) to let my body start to heal.  Take the meds(ie: Viagra,ect to keep the blood flowing in the surgery area.  Good luck, hopefully it will be pretty non eventful...................

Dave 3+4

VascodaGama's picture
VascodaGama
Posts: 3015
Joined: Nov 2010

My surgery experience may not be proper for you as it was open and I stayed in the hospital till they removed the catheter out. Here are links that I find having good advices;

http://www.mademan.com/mm/how-prepare-prostate-surgery.html

http://www.prostatecancerlive.com/how-patients-should-prepare-for-prostate-cancer-surgery/

Best wishes for a smooth operation.

VG

Grinder
Posts: 441
Joined: Mar 2017

You may want to check out Foley peripherals on Amazon. Like, I didn't know about those anchors until my fourth foley. They anchor the catheter tube on a sticky pad to your skin in a position that keeps it from moving and pulling on your business when you move around. There are also bed bags besides the leg bags that hold a LOT more so you don't have to worry about emptying at night and dealing with sleeping with a leg bag. You may not want the peripherals and just want to get it over with though. Like they said, keep it sterile. I used to wash the alternating bags out with water and colloidal silver to keep it anti bacterial, besides keeping the business sterile with antiseptic. Early in my career with UTIs I didn't keep the business absolutely sterile, and it all got infected, besides the prostatitis, and the bag was filling with a thick brown liquid. The danger of infection is even more alarming after an operation. By the time of my RP I was expert at it.

Also, I kept sliding down in the hospital bed. I stayed overnight... Didn't need pain meds, but the bed was tilted up slightly and I am average height 5-11, so looking back I wish I had something at foot of bed to push my feet against instead of sliding down all the time. But maybe that was just me.

I can't think of anything else to add what has already been said. If I think of something I will post.

The operation is a piece of cake, the biopsy and catheter the worst parts. That and being uncircumcised all over again cuz you lost an inch or two. And eventually get busy with your wife or flying solo to get the equipment working again. Time frames... average 3 to 5 months to begin to recover from incontinence. 1 to 2 years average to recover from ED. Buy some Mens Depends both max pads and unders and take one along when you get the catheter pulled.

Oh... And I had a lot of people praying for me. I have the best family and friends... I may not be a wealthy man, but what I do have I am very grateful for, and wealthy men would give it all up to have what I have if they knew how great it is.

And btw don't lift anything after the surgery. Walking only allowed for exercise. You don't want to tear the slits, and you especially don't want to create a hernia which can happen. So lay low and binge watch a cable series or something. Then begin a walking regimen. Parks are great. Start slow once the Cath is pulled then slowly increase time & distance.

hewhositsoncushions
Posts: 274
Joined: Mar 2017

If you have not got one, then a catheter extension bag for overnight is a god send. I plugged mine in, dropped it in a bowl on the floor and slept relatively well. Just remember it is there when you get up :)

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3295
Joined: May 2012

Lucky,

All of the stuff you itemized, I did none of them when I had DaVinci 2.5 years ago, and had no problems. Well, except kegels. And I was thin to begin with.

Probably the best thing to do is relax and stop worrying.  People all respond differently to the excact same proceedures: an appendectomy will not cause much reaction from one man, but another it will lay up long term. "Prep" is not likely to effect your responses one way or another.

I was 59 for the surgery. I spent one night in the hospital, got up about 7:00 the next morning to do some manditory walking, got some medical directives, and went home before noon.  Getting in and out of bed was tough for several days, but I did narcotiics for only two or three days.  The cath was inconvenient, but not terribly so. Mine was removed 5 days after surgery.  I wore a diaper 1.5 days after cath removal, and then just pads for a time, till continence returned.  I have had better urinary control since surgery than I had before, because BPH had caused me difficulties for years prior.

I was given two cath bags: One was a "mobility bag", that I could strap to my leg under my pants for getting about. The other was an "overnight" bag, much larger, for use when sleeping or planning to remain stationary for longer periods.

Best of luck,

max

GeorgeG
Posts: 127
Joined: May 2017

Had my open RP in 2016. Went back to the hotel two days after surgery and flew home the next day from Baltimore to Florida. Took one pain pill for the trip home and that was it. Took my own catheter and staples out. I was up and around the day after I got back to Florida. If it hurts, don't do it - let your body be your guide to recovery. Pay attention to your constipation avoidance instruction because if you don't it can be miserable. Also make sure that you have the big bag for nightime and have your bag safety pinned to the end or side of the bed. Just remeber that its attached when you get up. I just wore that same big bag all the time.

 

Good luck and try to stay relaxed.

 

George

 

Weird Harold
Posts: 11
Joined: Jun 2017

Be sure to keep your catheter clean and lubed. Don't let the bag fall, it will yank on your bladder.Surprised

Will Doran
Posts: 207
Joined: Sep 2015

Nick,

I replied to your Coffee / Beer post.

My surgery went well.  It was done in Dec 2013. It took 5 1/2 hours because of a birth defect, (Bladder adhered to my prostate) , Getting through abdominal Hernia mesh with the robot, and extreme thigh muscle development from road cycling.  That caused problems when they were trying to remove the lymh nodes from my groin.  It took a long time on the right side.  Then, Dr. M had the robot do a mirror image and it took him right to the lymph nodes in my left groin.  I was home the next evening and My doctor had me back on a treadmill two days later.  The catheter is a pain, but can be dealt with.  I sort of made a joke out of it and when I went to follow up appointments, I put the cath. bag in a State Liquor Store Bag.  The nurses and doctors would laugh like crazy when I'd come in.  I was given pain meds to take home, but never needed them.  I did develop a Hernia in my right groin.  My doctor warned me that that might happen.   I also developed a tumor in the same area.  It was near the hernia.  The Hernia acted up three years post surgery.  They were going to fix all that a year after the robotic surgery, but the hernia surgeon said it was too soon after the RP, since it took 5 1/2 hours.  That Hernia acted up this past winter (Feb 2017), and we did that surgery to repair the Hernia.  Dr. H said he would watch for the Tumor and if it was right in the area, he would remove it as well.  It was actually in his way for doing the hernia repair.  So, I got a "Two Fer".  Actually the recovery from the Hernia and Turmor  removal was harder than the Prostate surgery.  The tumor was benign and was a result of injury during the robotic work in my right groin.  All is going well now.

All of us are different and thus what you might go through might be different.  We can only share what we have experienced.  

Best of luck

Love, Peace and God Bless

Will

Lucky64
Posts: 29
Joined: Jun 2017

OP here. Thanks for all your great advice! Really appreciate it. Getting scared though...

 

Nick

GeorgeG
Posts: 127
Joined: May 2017

Try to stay relaxed and visualize success. Be glad for your excellent choice to work the problem with a proactive approach. Visualize a successful surgery and and fast recovery. May sound new age and hokey to some people but it works, trust me. All successful people visualize success and turn into their problems to solve them.

 

George

 

Grinder
Posts: 441
Joined: Mar 2017

Yes, there's nothing wrong with meditation as a way to focus off problems and instead focus on solutions. It only became new agey when some gurus were teaching mantras that were actually appeals to Hindu gods in Hindi. Which is fine if you are Hindu. I am not. So focus on successful solutions and be confident you have done all you can, and pray about it. I was not fearful at all, and like I said before, I was fearful the surgery would NOT get done. And there are guys on here, as you know by now, that can tell you everything you need to know, and then some.

JS2017
Posts: 7
Joined: Jul 2017

Take the pain meds on time to stay on top of the pain. Sit around and watch TV or whatever you do that's relaxing, but you will not be zonked out on the pain meds.

Buy urinary "diapers" PRIOR to surgery as you will wear them immediately. Costco has the cheapest price, then Walmart or Meijer.

The catheter will be the most annying part of post-op, but it only stays in one week. You will make it.

Don't lift anything heavy and take it easy.

Keep the catheter and incisions clean. Important!

I slept in my bed and I placed a pad under the sheets for added protection for the bed. 

Just be patient and don;t worry about things. Time will slow down, but you will be all right in about six weeks. Read my blog for more info.

 

 

 

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