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When will continence return; post robotic prostatectomy?
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When will continence return; post robotic prostatectomy?

Three weeks ago, my husband had his cancerous prostate removed using the DaVinci robotic system. Everything went very well; all cancer removed, no bleeding, all nerves reconnected. The catheter was removed after 6 days, and he has been wearing pads ever since. He does his K exercises regularly but is getting very frustrated because he doesn't think he is getting better control over his "plumbing." Everything I read says it will take 3 months for complete control to return. What signs can I give him that he is improving? He is already waking up at night to use the bathroom (instead of wetting his pad). I told him that is a sign he is improving. His main complaint is that every time he stands from a sitting position, he gets wet. How long will that last and what can he look forward to as a sign of improvement and how long will that be? He is a good patient except for this frustration!
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Avatar_n_tn

My husband also had the same procedure 3 1/2 months ago, he was lucky he got his urinary control back after 6 weeks.( k exercises helped)  his surgeon did say it could take as long as three months.   The same thing with him, he got up in the middle of the night to urinate. and wet his pad when sitting.  he was frustrated, but after 6 weeks it stopped happening.  now he doesn't wear a pad at all.  Just keep doing the execises, and drink less fluid about an hour before going to bed that might help with the waking up at night. urinate before going to bed to empty the bladder. that's what my husband did and it helped. You might also have him call his urologist/ surgeon and voice his concerns.  He might need some reassurance from  his MD.
good luck
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Avatar_f_tn
My husband has the same as Wenray962.  It is 3 weeks after his radical prostatectomy, and he has a leakage, even getting out of the shower.  He spoke to his incontinence nurse who said it was not normal, but we think perhaps it is. He will ring the urologist tomorrow to voice our worries.  I think that he will go through lots of pads.
Thanks for your help.
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359389_tn?1289793384
Ladies, it truly won't be long now. Keep assuring your husbands.  I did not even finish using my package of pads. Though my doctor did say I was ahead of the curve, I notticed that there was a "turn-aournd" that seemed to happen between 3 and 6 weeks.  Patience is the name of the game.  If your husbands are experiencing some sense of control in the evenings or throughout the day, things ARE getting BETTER.  Doctors will tell you that it can take 3 months, but with the robotic surgery, that time frame is often reduced.  Your husbands' ages will be a factor as well.  I understand the frustration, but it seemed like things changed overnight for me.  It won't be long for your husbands,  Best of luck.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thank you for that comment.  I have to say that my husband had a radical prostatatectomy and not done by robotic surgery because he was Gleeson 8, and the doctor wanted to have a good look around.  He said it looked a mess when he opened up, but he was able to get rid of the cancer, and he doesn't need radiotherapy.  Incontinence is getting him down, and he uses about 3 - 4 pads a day.  We are hoping that the sphincter muscle hasn't been damaged during the op.  Hope that someone has some more helpful comments.
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359389_tn?1289793384
I understand.  The repetition of the kegels will help.  You wrote that he was "a mess" inside--were his nerves spared?  As he gets stronger they may kick in as well and help him regain continence.  Is he on viagra therapy?  That will help with the restoration of the nerves and in return help with continence.  I am sure he has discovered other methods besides pads.  I thought about them but stayed with the pads.  There are some surgical solutions, but most doctors like to wait about them to see if natural function can be restored.  After his operation, I am guessing your husband will want to wait and try other avenues as well.  Best of luck.  I will be having a prostascint scan soon because even with a great pathology report and a "text book" operation, my numbers didn't go down.  Perserverance is one of the keys to survival.  Keep on keeping on.
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Avatar_f_tn
Well first I am sorry that your psa didn't come down.  Only side he was able to have the nerves spared.  The other side had the aggressive tumour on it so the nerves went with the tumour.  I would have thought that the pathology report would have been accurate. No Viagra therapy yet, but maybe to come.  He is continuing the kegel exercises all day.  Yes I read about the surgical solutions, but he wouldn't be too keen yet to go in to hospital again so soon.  Thanks for your advise art dude.
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359389_tn?1289793384
I wouldn't be--I'm not--too keen about more surgery either.  Ask the doctor about viagra therapy.  there are some very good studies that show it helps in the area of penile "regeneration."  Doctors have discovered that men who are on an active program of therapy have less scar tissue than men who are not on a regirmen.  Scar tissue of course makes erections more difficult later when they can return.  It also assists with blood flow of course, so that would help with the nerves as well which in turn does aid the return of continence.  I would suggest going to the urologist about this soon.  The first three months are key.  This forum has been great--I hope we all continue to learn from one another's experiences.  Peace.
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Avatar_f_tn
Thanks for the comments.  We will ask about Viagra therapy. Interested about the extra blood flow.  He is having a bad day today, but is persevering with his exercises.  We come from Australia, and over there we call Kegel exercises Pelvic Floor exercises.  We go to the urologist in a weeks time, and we have a list of things to ask.  He is one of the better ones, and we feel very confident with him.  3 weeks 4days since his operation, so hopefully leakage gets better even if it is a slow process.
Good luck for your test.
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359389_tn?1289793384
Thanks very much.  We have to wait for the radioactive "stuff"  to become available again.  The local supplier/manufacturer is out of stock.  It may be a slow process, but once your husband gains continence and you are actively working on regaining sexual function, it won't seem that long.  It is an uphill battle.  Best wishes for the next phase.  When i was talking with a friend who is almost at the point of becoming a survivor, he told me he regained his sexual function in about 18 months--that was with conventional surgery. It is about patience, perserverence, hope, and trust.  Peace.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hope things are going well with you after the scan, and that you will find that things are okay.  We go to the urologist tomorrow, and my husband has a lis t of questions to ask the Doctor.  He still has his incontinence problems but is feeling much brighter now.  I think that 48 is very young to have prostate problems Artdude!!!!!!
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359389_tn?1289793384
Thanks for the note.  IYou are right--48 is young, but I am not the youngest patient that my urologist has ever diagnosed with PC.  I am confident that there is a reason for me to be going through this trial and eventually it will be revealed.
         I am glad that your husband's spirits are lifted.  And that he has a list of questions.  I discovered a written list helped me immensely while in the doctor's office.  I go for my CT and bone scan tomorrow.  (The hospital was never out of the nuclear medicine--big miscommunication.)  I go for my IV on Thursday and then the prostascint scans on Monday and Tuesday 28 and 29.  
     I have found this forum to be very helpful.  All the best.
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