How I Survived Prostate Cancer After da Vinci Robotic Surgery – Day to Day Log

How I Survived Prostate Cancer After da Vinci Robotic Surgery – Day to Day Log

Yes, I had prostate cancer and yes, I chose surgery to treat it. Before we go any further, let me explain that I am not a medical doctor – far from it. In fact, I’m an accountant. So there is absolutely no assurance that anything I say that touches on medical matters is true, correct, precise or up to date. Even if a statement I make about medicine is accurate, it may not apply to... Read More
Tendency to Drop Things After Prostate Surgery

Tendency to Drop Things After Prostate Surgery

I had prostate removal surgery, and let me tell you a little about that first week at home after surgery (dropping everything). I was 62 years old when I had da Vinci robotic prostate surgery and in pretty good overall health.  I played basketball in high school and tried to stay active in later life, kept my weight in check, and ate “right” whenever I could.  To my way of thinking,... Read More
Spillage of Cancer Cells During Surgery

Spillage of Cancer Cells During Surgery

Will cancer cells spill into my body when the surgeon is in there cutting away?  This was one of my main questions, when I was considering how to treat my prostate cancer.  Which therapy should I go with?  If I choose surgery, won’t that make things worse (in the long run) by cutting up the prostate gland in my body and spilling the cancer cells all over the place?  Over time, won’t... Read More
Going Back to Work After Prostate Surgery

Going Back to Work After Prostate Surgery

Before I had my robotic prostate surgery, I had heard/seen some amazing stories about how fast certain guys were returning to work.  It sounded almost too good to be true, or maybe they were just cherry picking the best case scenarios.  But what is more typical – what is more reasonable? Well, I had my prostate removed by a urologist with the assistance of a da Vinci robotic system, and... Read More
Recovery from Prostate Surgery

Recovery from Prostate Surgery

  Robotic prostate surgery recovery time Prostate cancer runs in my family, and I knew it was only a matter of time before my number came up.  When I did get the diagnosis, I chose robotic surgery to treat MY case of prostate cancer, but there are many other excellent therapies available.  You can only decide what to do for your case of prostate cancer by consulting your medical doctor. How... Read More
How Soon Are You Up After Robotic Prostate Surgery?

How Soon Are You Up After Robotic Prostate Surgery?

Before I went in for da Vinci robotic prostate surgery, my doctor told me, “we let you rest on the day of surgery, but then get you up the next day.”  Ok, that sounded reasonable to me. In the back of my mind, I recall reading how some doctors recommend you get vertical after surgery, walk a few steps – if you can. It helps to get the blood flowing.  However, you have to follow... Read More
Prostate surgery prep shaving – Should I shave my groin?

Prostate surgery prep shaving – Should I shave my groin?

Before I went in for da Vinci prostate surgery, I wondered if I needed to shave my groin area. I don’t remember anyone saying anything to me about this. I thought,  “should I help them out and shave my groin? No, no, no. About a week before my surgery, I had to go in for preadmission testing – click here for my post on prostate surgery preadmission details. So I casually asked... Read More
6 Incredible Stories of How I Pee Better After Prostate Surgery

6 Incredible Stories of How I Pee Better After Prostate Surgery

These are MY stories.  All I talk about is what happened to me after prostate surgery. All cases of prostate cancer are different. You can only make a decision about your case by consulting with a licensed medical doctor. Story #1  First Experience After Prostate Surgery After my prostate surgery, I was at home taking it easy when the day arrived to have the catheter removed in the... Read More
How A Prostate Biopsy Fooled Me Into Thinking I was Ok

How A Prostate Biopsy Fooled Me Into Thinking I was Ok

MY PROSTATE BIOPSY SAID NO CANCER – WRONG ! If you have read some of my other posts, you know that prostate cancer runs in my family, so I had been carefully monitoring my PSA over the years. As you can see from the chart above, my PSA was rising slowly at a more or less “regular” rate (tied to aging) until about 2010. Then it shot up quickly to the 5 range and then just as quickly to the... Read More
Why My Doctor Uses the da Vinci Robot to Remove Cancerous Prostate Glands

Why My Doctor Uses the da Vinci Robot to Remove Cancerous Prostate Glands

The doctor who performed my prostatectomy was – like most urologists – originally trained to do the traditional or “open” type of prostate removal surgery. That’s where they make a 4″ to 6” incision in your groin and go in manually to remove your prostate. Then the da Vinci Surgical System received approval in the U.S. and some doctors got on the robotic bandwagon and... Read More
Why is a Bowel Cleanse Necessary for a da Vinci Robotic Prostatectomy?

Why is a Bowel Cleanse Necessary for a da Vinci Robotic Prostatectomy?

Yes, I had to do a bowel cleanse before my prostate surgery, just as I had to do before a routine colonoscopy. You know the program – first drink this fluid and then the toilet becomes your new-best friend for the next 12 hours or so. But why? Why do you have to go through this not-very-pleasant experience before prostate surgery? I did some research and came up with two possible... Read More
One Day After da Vinci Prostate Surgery

One Day After da Vinci Prostate Surgery

It was 3:00 a.m. on the day after surgery, and I was awake in bed. So I decided to ask the night-shift nurse if I could get up and walk, and she said sure.  She unhooked my compression socks from the machine at the foot of the bed, unplugged my IV stand from the wall (to go on battery), and we proceeded to take a walk down the hall – and went a slightly further distance than my first walk... Read More
Surgery Day: Da Vinci Robotic Prostate Surgery

Surgery Day: Da Vinci Robotic Prostate Surgery

This is how my surgery day went. Yours may be similar or different. Every case of prostate cancer is unique. SURGERY DAY – My da Vinci robotic surgery is scheduled for 7:30 am, so I was told to arrive by 6:00am. Nurse’s first prep me in a small, curtained off area, insert IV’s in both arms, because they want to use one in the operating room and one for backup. They take more blood samples.... Read More
One Day Before da Vinci Prostate Surgery

One Day Before da Vinci Prostate Surgery

Pretty soon it’s go time. Tomorrow is surgery day, and I’m supposed to be there first thing in the morning. My instructions: do not eat solid foods today, just clear liquids. The goal, I believe, is to clean out the colon. But why? I think it has something to do with the fact that the prostate gland sits right next to, or on top of, the colon and when your doc is removing the... Read More
Pre Admission Testing: One Week Before Prostate Surgery

Pre Admission Testing: One Week Before Prostate Surgery

For the hospital that I was scheduled to have my da Vinci robotic surgery in, the guideline was to make an appointment one week or earlier, before my surgery date, for P.A.T. or Pre Admission Testing. The pre admission nurses pretty much ran the show for this meeting. I filled out forms, and they drew blood for blood typing – I guess in case I needed some extra blood during surgery.... Read More
Prostate Nerve Sparing: How I Tried to Lobby My Doctor

Prostate Nerve Sparing: How I Tried to Lobby My Doctor

Ok, I had been diagnosed with prostate cancer and had scheduled da Vinci robotic surgery at the local hospital with my urologist. What am I thinking now? I’m thinking about how – in a few short weeks – I am going to be in an operating room, knocked out, and my doctor is going to be snipping away down there in my groin area. How much is he going to take out?   Is he going to... Read More
Prostate Biopsy: The Suprising Truth About How 2 Biopsies Can Be So Different

Prostate Biopsy: The Suprising Truth About How 2 Biopsies Can Be So Different

Yes, I had prostate cancer and, yes, I chose surgery to treat it. You may choose another form of therapy for your case, but there is one thing I found quite interesting about the surgical choice. After prostate surgery, you learn your WHOLE cancer story. How much prostate cancer did I actually have (volume)? How widespread was it (staging)? How aggressive was it (grading)? Did the cancer leak... Read More
How A Prostate Biopsy Fooled Me Into Thinking I was Ok

One Man’s PSA History: the Rise to Prostate Cancer and the Fall After Prostate Surgery

Prostate cancer runs rampant in my family. I won’t bore you with the details, but it seems like most of the guys in my family are diagnosed with the disease when they hit their 60’s or 70’s. So as a younger guy, this definitely got my attention. What to do? For starters, I was way more vigilant in checking my PSA level than your average Joe might have been. As you can see from... Read More
The Truth Behind a Prostate Biopsy – What Is It Really Like?

The Truth Behind a Prostate Biopsy – What Is It Really Like?

What is it like to get a prostate biopsy? Well, all I can do is tell you how my procedure went, but from reading about others’ experiences, it seems like mine was fairly typical. It all starts, of course, with a bad PSA score or a fast-rising PSA score or maybe a suspicious DRE (digital rectal exam). And your doctor says, “I think we should do a biopsy.” At first I thought that... Read More
Won’t My Prostate Cancer Spill Into My Body if I Have Surgery?

Won’t My Prostate Cancer Spill Into My Body if I Have Surgery?

This is one of the questions I had before going in for prostate surgery. Ok, so my doctor is about to remove my prostate gland, which the biopsy has already said is cancerous. Is he going to slice it up in my body before he takes it out? If so, aren’t some of those cancer cells going to leak out into my body and stay behind even after the cancerous gland is removed? That can’t be a... Read More
The Urological Trifecta after Radical Prostatectomy – What is it exactly?

The Urological Trifecta after Radical Prostatectomy – What is it exactly?

Most of us have heard of the word, trifecta, especially as used in the horse racing world, but it can also mean “winning” three things in a row – a triple win if you will. Well urologists also use the term for men who undergo a radical prostatectomy or complete removal of the prostate. What exactly is the trifecta or triple win after prostate surgery? It’s a very... Read More
5 Reasons Why I’m Glad I chose da Vinci for my Prostate Cancer Surgery

5 Reasons Why I’m Glad I chose da Vinci for my Prostate Cancer Surgery

1) The prostate cancer is gone. My doctor told me I had prostate cancer, and I’m a relatively young-ish guy (62) and in pretty good health and expect to live at least 20 years or more. Watchful waiting or active surveillance – no way, not for me. I chose the “gold standard” for treating organ-confined prostate cancer. That is, surgical removal (prostatectomy) by an... Read More
Bloating: What is the Real Story after Robotic Prostate Surgery?

Bloating: What is the Real Story after Robotic Prostate Surgery?

Ok, I’ve read a lot of stories online about men who have had robotic prostate surgeries, and I occasionally hear them complaining about their “bloating” problem. Ironically, an old friend of mine also told me about how he helped somebody out after prostate surgery. He picked him up at the hospital and drove him home, and the first thing he mentioned to me was how this guy had a... Read More
What is the Recovery Period Like After Prostate Surgery?

What is the Recovery Period Like After Prostate Surgery?

Robotic prostate surgery recovery time What’s the recovery period like after robotic prostate surgery?  When can I go back to work after prostate surgery? If you are considering the da Vinci robotic form of prostate surgery, I just went through it, and I can tell you how the recovery period went for me. First, I spent a couple of days in the hospital – could have been sent home after... Read More
3 Things I Don’t Miss After Prostate Surgery

3 Things I Don’t Miss After Prostate Surgery

1) Dull Pelvic Pain I occasionally had this dull ache somewhere deep down in the groin area. I don’t know why exactly, but my guess is that it had something to do with an enlarged and inflamed prostate gland. Throw in a little long-term prostatitis and there you have a number of reasons for this kind of pelvic ache. Once in a while, it would even flare up to a point where it felt like a... Read More