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Robotic Prostatectomy Surgery

I have always been a healthy guy so when I started to urinate blood after my weekly 3 mile run I was to say the least alarmed. Within 6 weeks I had PSA test, CT scan, bone scan and a prostate biopsy with the Gleason score of 8. My head is still spinning with the news of prostate cancer and still trying to sort things out in my head with my upcoming robotic-assisted surgery in less than 2 weeks. Not sure what to expect after the surgery, after reading some of the stories here it sounds like my life is going to change in a major way. I just hope I have some of the qualities of my life that I have enjoyed for the past 58 years.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The ProstateCancer.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Comments

  • Bill
    1 month ago

    Radiation therapy causes a 50% increase in the risk of getting Anal Cancer. Finasteride is a VERY dangerous drug. Get the Prostate removed by the Retropubic method.

  • Richard Faust moderator
    1 month ago

    Hi Bill. A lot of things can go into choosing a particular prostate cancer treatment; such as grade, containment, other health conditions/considerations, etc… There is a risk of secondary malignancies following radiation. These risks can vary with the type of radiation treatment. This article from “Therapeutic Advances in Urology” looks at these risks, including rectal cancer: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3126090/. It notes that “The risk of developing cancer of the rectum after radiation therapy for prostate cancer is similar to the risk of having a first-degree relative with colorectal cancer. There is evidence that radiation shifts the patients from normal to moderate risk for rectal cancer” and “It seems that there is a relatively increased risk of rectal cancer for patients that underwent radiation therapy for prostate cancer. However, it is still not clear whether this risk should be solely attributed to the effects of radiation alone.” Every individual, with input from their medical team, has to weigh these risks. Best, Richard (ProstateCancer.net Team)

  • sayhey
    2 months ago

    Gleason 9 surgery 2 months ago. Still frustrated with in continence. Doing kegals. Any advice how many and how often. Sheesh.

  • Richard Faust moderator
    1 month ago

    Hi sayhey. Your frustration is understandable. Regaining continence can be a slow process. In this article our contributor Will writes about his work with a physical therapist, dealing with plateaus in progress, adjusting exercises, and building optimism: https://prostatecancer.net/living/kegeling-first-line-defense/. Hope you see some progress soon. Best, Richard (ProstateCancer.net Team)

  • Oshrunner author
    1 month ago

    sayhey,
    I’ve been doing kegels 3 to 4 times a day since the catheter came out, I usually do 10 reps 20 seconds each. Its been a month for me and I have not seen any improvement. I go through 4 to 5 pads a day, holding out hope that I see improvement.

  • Oshrunner author
    2 months ago

    sahay,
    I wish I had some good advice for you but I’m in the same boat as you one month after surgery. I did talk to my radiation oncologist earlier in the week and he set up an appointment for me to see a physical therapist, hoping that will do me some good. I’m at my witts end with this incontinance already. More has to be done with this side affect, more men after surgery have this prolonged problem than the doctors want to admit. Its hard to move on when your dealing with this every second of the day. I have even tried using an external catheter and leg bag just for some relief. I have even thought about using a Cunningham clamp considering I have to go back to work in 4 days and my job is pretty physical. Hang in there hopefully things work out.

  • golfer60
    2 months ago

    Hi Oshrunner, I was diagnosed in March of 2018. I had just turned 58. I had robotic surgery on May 31, 2018. I am not a runner but I have been a golfer for over 40 years and I have been an avid walker for several years. I took the advice of a friend who had previously had the same surgery and I went to physical therapy before my surgery. Maybe it was the combination of the therapy, golfing and walking that strengthened my pelvic floor muscles but after surgery I had almost no incontinence. I had a small leak after I yawned while walking once and another time when passing gas but I quickly learned how to prepare myself before such “events”. I returned to walking several times a day within a few days after surgery. Once released for full activity I returned to golfing without any issues. There was not a lot of pain but I was prescribed medication and I took several in the first few days of recovery. The biggest nuisance was the catheter. Getting that out was a relief…. I did a lot of reading before surgery and like you I found it to be a downer. I guess most people who take the time to post things tend to post negative experiences. I hope sharing this helps and I hope things are going well for you.

  • Oshrunner author
    2 months ago

    Golfer60,
    Thank you for the positive response, like you the pain was manageable after surgery but I haven’t had the success you have had with incontinance, still really struggling 2 week after the catheter was removed. I wish I would have done physical therapy before the surgery which is very good advice. This weekend is the half marathon in my town which I have been fortunate enough to run several times, it’s really a reminder how far I have to go in my total recovery. I think you had the right idea on getting a leg up on your post surgery recovery. Thank you for the positive response, it has given me some hope, God Bless.

  • JoBu
    2 months ago

    Hello Oshrunner,
    From your whirlwind experience of suspecting a problem, having multiple tests, choosing treatment and scheduling surgery I’m sure your head is spinning. I spaced that process out over 18 months and felt overwhelmed at times. The encouragement I can give you is that I felt better the day of my surgery than I had in weeks leading up to it, because I had peace of mind that I was being treated.
    My pre-surgery advice is: practice “prehab” and start doing your kegels now. You’ll be glad later. After the surgery take it really easy. As a runner you’ll probably want to get active again soon. Don’t rush it, give your body time to heal.

  • Richard Faust moderator
    3 months ago

    Hi Oshrunner. Sorry to hear about the diagnosis, but glad you have come to a place you can get information and support. Many guys here have been where you are and understand.

    First and most important thing to point out is the PCa is absolutely treatable. As cited with specifics on this page covering PCa statistics, the survival rates, especially for early stages, is very high: https://prostatecancer.net/prostate-cancer-statistics/.

    Second, concerning the prostatectomy and the potential side effects, you may want to look at this article on the topic from our editorial team: https://prostatecancer.net/treatment/radical-prostatectomy/. You doctor should also be able to give you more details.

    You are correct that things will change and it is important to learn what you can, as there are things that you can do to prepare and steps to take post surgery. In this article one of our contributors writes about his surgery and the early recovery period: https://prostatecancer.net/living/riding-roller-coaster/. Other community members may also chime in with their experiences, but it is important to remember that everyone is different and experiences side effects differently. Again, your doctor should also be able to help in this area.

    Know that you can do this and this community will be here for you. Please feel free to keep us posted on how you are doing. Best, Richard (ProstateCancer.net Team)

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