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Finally hitting me...

Posts: 21
Joined: Jun 2012

Hi All - nothing to ask - just something to get off my chest. Have a Radical Open Prostectomy sheduled for next Monday. Thought I had a handle on everything, but guess I was wrong. Not sure why but it all hit me this morning and although I know being nervous doesnt help anything, I can't shake this feeling of dread and depression. They say confession is good for the soul - hoped that by putting this out here I can take it off my shoulders a little. Life sure has a way of changing our plans dosen't it? Thanks for letting me ramble. Be brave...

Posts: 986
Joined: Mar 2010

It's certainly understandable to develop nerves in advance of an upcoming surgery -- especially one as potentially risky as an open prostate surgery.

The question is: What is your cause for concern? Is it just the risk of undergoing surgery generally or is it concern about the procedure itself and its potential side effects?

If it's the former, I'd say just "hang tough" -- you've done your research and made your choice and you just have to hope for the best results based on the skill of your surgeon and his team.

On the other hand, if it's the latter and you're second guessing your choice, I'd take the time to reassess the choice and, if there are any lingering doubts that it's the right one for you, I'd cancel and postpone the surgery until you're absolutely sure that's the way to go.

Whatever happens, I (and I'm sure the rest of us here) wish you all the best.

Good luck!!

hopeful and opt...
Posts: 1948
Joined: Apr 2009

My thoughts and prayers are with you at this time in your life.

ralph.townsend1's picture
Posts: 359
Joined: Feb 2012

Kurt, I know you will do fine. Stay in control of your throughts and your family will get you threw this.

God bless, keep in touch.

laserlight's picture
Posts: 165
Joined: May 2012

Having depression with this is normal. This is a major life changing event. I was dealing with this before surgery. The thing to keep in mind is the cancer, this junk does not give up and will not go away. The main focus is to treat this cancer. When I was diagnosed I asked my doctor if I left this untreated how long would I live, he came back and gave me a couple of years. This is rough stuff. You will do fine, just follow what the doctors and hospital want. These people are the experts and they work with people all the time. In my case the hospital set me up with social services if I wanted. I would suspect that your hospital has the same services. Cancer changes your life, it has changed my life big time, but I am thankful that it was treated. Leading up to surgery I was on a BIG ROLLER COASTER ride. Now I am thankful for a day at a time. Hang in there and keep us posted.

the other Kurt

Posts: 694
Joined: Apr 2010


On your previous thread, your reply to my post was very powerful (http://csn.cancer.org/node/241991#comment-1252908).  I suggest you read what you wrote, then read it again and give yourself credit for the work you've obviously done before.  You have the power (& mojo)...remember to make the time to use it.   

And most importantly,  remember the breath--deep breath in, slowly exhale.  Repeat as needed during mindful meditation and guided visualization to mitigate the anxiety & fear.  Prior to undergoing previous major non elective medical procedures, my friends and family tried to reassure me that "everything would be all right."   Easy to say when you're not the patient!  

The breathing practice, in particular, & guided visualizations helped the most to calm my nerves and worries.  These practices also proved enormously beneficial for me in coping with the roller coaster of emotions on this PCa journey with my husband.  If you'd like some suggestions for audio guided visualizations and/or books on mindful meditation to help prepare for The Day, PLMK. 

BTW, re the proverbial "...forest for the trees,"  thought you'd like to know you're not the only one--I have a charter membership in the "Can't See the Forest for the Trees" club.   IMHO, acknowledging that fact is necessary before the forest is clearly visable.  Now,  if only we can keep those trees in full view (perspective) but stay focused on the forest!   It may sound corny, but with practice, I personally know it can help. 

Be well. 

mrs pjd

VascodaGama's picture
Posts: 2501
Joined: Nov 2010


I think you are experiencing depression. This is common pre and after surgery. However, once all done you can turn this page of your life book and .......all will be part of the past.

Along our lives we all experienced occasional anxiety and most of the times the cause were due to the fact of dealing with the unknown. Our minds will take us to the abysms of the worse and such triplicate still more that sour feeling.

For me “warming up” before confronting a stressful situation works well and helps me out of depression. The way I do it is by figuring out (imagining) the procedure in detail as seen along the whole period but seeing it with the eyes of someone else. It is like that I am in another person’s body and I am looking to the scene where I am the player. The feeling is that the actor is not me so that I should not be in fear.
My strategy is in fact similar to the Buddhism practiced where one learns in accepting our karma. This warming up, sort of meditation or Zen, helped me in confronting the situation you are in at my times. Try it. It may work.

Here is my story which may help you to image yourself as the actor but seen from your own eyes;

“… On the “D-Day” with an empty stomach at noon time the nurse and a doctor in charge of the pre-op preparations gave me a pill for relaxation, and then I dressed a light hospital gown and was taken on a stretcher to the surgery hall. There I was given general anaesthesia (epidural) with a shot done near the spinal cord to block any pain. I fall asleep at the entrance to the operating room. Much later, I think, I recall being awaken at one time by the doctor calling my name to which I answer (I saw three or four greyish silhouettes over me). He asked me if I was all right and I said that I felt urinating. Then I fallen asleep again and only waken up at around 22H00 at the recovery room, and saw my wife smiling at me. She had been the whole time of the operation in a wanting lounge where she was kept informed on the progression of the surgery. She told me that Dr. Komatsu shown her my prostate gland (on the way to the pathologist lab at the hospital) explaining that it looked normal in aspect shape and size. He told me later that the operation took 5 hours and that he had carefully suck/vacuum all soft tissue surrounding the organs before stitching me up.”

Wishing you a successful eventless surgery.


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