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Old 12-01-2009, 10:25 AM   #1
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One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Hi everyone, okay so my husband is getting really depressed as he seems to be leaking a lot. He wanted me to ask what seems to be the standard time it will take to get some kind of control (1, 2 or 3 weeks). It is worse when he gets up and walks (says it just keeps coming). The excercises they gave him will work I know but he doesn't think they are but I keep telling him it's only been a week. When he does go to the washroom he goes a fair bit so I don't think it's as bad as what he thinks. He just says I hate peeing my pants (pad) and feeling wet all the time! He gets up a couple of times a night so that isn't bad is it? He uses about 4 or 5 pads a day. He had robotic surgery on Nov. 11th and I think he figured doing it that way he'd have no side effects but that isn't always the case. Just an idea as to what to expect or what is normal would be nice to hear.
Thanks Chris

 
Old 12-01-2009, 02:21 PM   #2
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

While everyone heals differently, many of us took at least 2 or 3 months to gain reasonable control. I was just about where you were at 1 week and by 3 weeks I was down to 2 or 3 pads a day. At 3 months I was almost totally continent, but used a pad for a couple more months just for safety. I won't say be patient because I'm sure you here that all the time. I'll just say hang in there, it does keep getting better as time goes by. Good luck, Allan

Last edited by apacker1950; 12-01-2009 at 02:29 PM.

 
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Old 12-01-2009, 07:37 PM   #3
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kcon HB Userkcon HB User
Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Hi Chris,

It is a frustrating time, but thankfully it passes into the rear-view mirror...but it does seem slow when you are living with it minute-by-minute, hour-by-hour. My doctor publishes a table of time to get to pad-free based on the experiences in his practice for patients undergoing da Vinci surgery. You can find that table at this link to a posting I previously made here at HealthBoards (copy & paste this into your browser):

http://www.healthboards.com/boards/showpost.php?p=3980637&postcount=23

The results in this table truly show that everyone is different in their recovery. I wrote that post when I was 1-month post-surgery (you husband is only about 3-weeks). It just takes time, plus deliberate and dedicated effort to do the Kegel exercises (and do them properly).

There are right ways, and wrong ways to do Kegels. Here is one of the better descriptions I've seen written (I call it "cutting off a fart" in man-language):
Imagine trying to stop yourself from passing wind. To do this, you would squeeze the muscle around the anus. Try squeezing that muscle as if you really did have wind. You should be able to feel the muscle move. You should be aware of the skin around the anus tightening and the anus being pulled up and away from whatever you are sitting on. Do not move the buttocks and thighs. Do not hold your breath - breathe normally. Do not tighten your abdominal or buttock muscles - keep them relaxed. Later, you can check whether you are contracting the correct muscles by touching [I skipped this part] the opening at the rectum as you are tightening the muscle - you should feel the opening of the rectum contract at the same time.
Hope this helps...

 
Old 12-02-2009, 07:39 AM   #4
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

As previously noted, everyone is different. I was fully continent 8 weeks after cath removal. The interesting part is that it wasn't gradual as you might expect. I measured the leakage by weighing the pads (I'm an engineer - can't help it). It actually was increasing during the first 3 1/2 weeks (to near 60 gms), then dropped drastically (to 20 gms) and leveled off for the next 1 1/2 weeks. It dropped to a lower level (8 gms) for another 3 weeks then stopped. My doctor said that pattern is normal, so perhaps you're due for a sudden improvement.

Best of luck!

Last edited by Kemahsabe; 12-02-2009 at 10:20 AM.

 
Old 12-02-2009, 08:28 AM   #5
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Thanks guys for your posts they are a great help. Today I also did the conversion from grams to ounces and when I see that it really doesn't seem too bad. I know that's easy for me to say as I'm not the one going through this. Here in Canada they do metric but that came just as we were in the upper grades in junior school so we never really learned it. When the physiotherapist told us to weight the pads in grams that's what we've been doing but seeing 125 gms vs 4 ounces looks a lot worse! See Kemahsabe not just engineers weight their pads! I figured it would be good to measure so he can see that he's getting better but the last two days it's been worse so that has him upset. Knowing that this has also happened to you Kemahsabe is good to know so I can tell him to expect this and maybe he will feel better. kcon I'll give the chart to my husband so he can see this doesn't just happen right away and to try and relax and just keep working on his kegals. Love your description of a proper kegel and actually that pretty much was how the physiotherapist said it. Allen, I read your reply to my husband last night and it helped for sure. One thing he said was wow well I'm at 3 to 4 pads now so I guess that's not too bad.

To me he doing way better then I thought he would as he really had little to no pain 4 days after the operation. About a week later he was having a pressure type feeling in his rectum but once the cath was out this went away. Still no pathology report but really I would rather wait until after Christmas anyways. Actually this whole journey started on December 28th which was the day we heard his PSA was high so it's now been almost a year since prostate cancer entered our lives.

I'm so thankful for this site as it has helped me in the very beginning when he was first diagnosed and all your replies have helped me and him understand what is going on now. Thanks again for your advise and thoughts.
Chris

 
Old 12-02-2009, 10:25 AM   #6
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Chris,

I added the weight (or volume in cc's, since they're the same in the metric system) of leakage to my previous post so you can compare.

Best of luck, again!

 
Old 12-02-2009, 05:38 PM   #7
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

As all have said - each of us have had different experiences - and for most it takes time. One thing I want to add is that even after you stop wearing the pads you need to be aware of what you are doing. For me (Robotic on September 14th) it was no different than the exercises and awareness I have to do because I hurt my back (not related to PC). Even though I am pad free, there are times when I leak, but they are very predictable. One of the most common times is when I am watching something funny - when I laugh real hard I have to tighten up or I can feel a little leakage. The other time is sneezing. I have talked to my wife (and also my mother!) about this and their reactions have all been the same … welcome to the club  I also find that if I am very tired in the evening the simple act of bending down can cause the feeling of leaking.

I would say we all go through stages when recovery was slower than expected but I would also add that there have been times when my recovery has been much faster than I expected.

I know that you are glad that you have not gotten the path report back, but one of the things I read talked about stress levels. It is possible that both have a level of stress over the path results and that maybe leading to a (hidden) cause of some of the leakage. I will also say that waiting for your first PSA post op also creates a level of stress. I know it did between my wife and I even though we never talked about it.

Thanks for sharing your experience and hope I have helped a little.

MrMike

 
Old 12-26-2009, 02:09 PM   #8
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Hi Chris, Can you tell me how your husband is doing? Today I am 8 days post cathedar and did get some encouragement to read that incontinence may get worse for a while. I feel mine is. My problems exactly what your husbands was, just can't quite wetting, especially when walking even when I try to tighten muscles. I am 53, don't know your husbands age but did read it might be worse the older we are? Thanks Chris

 
Old 12-29-2009, 06:39 AM   #9
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by airportbum1634 View Post
Hi Chris, Can you tell me how your husband is doing? Today I am 8 days post cathedar and did get some encouragement to read that incontinence may get worse for a while. I feel mine is. My problems exactly what your husbands was, just can't quite wetting, especially when walking even when I try to tighten muscles. I am 53, don't know your husbands age but did read it might be worse the older we are? Thanks Chris
Hi airportbum1634. My husband is 51. He is now almost 5 weeks post cath removal and he's still working on control. He had gone from 165 grams (5 ozs) to 35 grams (1 oz) over this time but then he went back to work on the 21st and we was back up to 65 grams. He is pretty much up and down all day and he found he was okay with the walking it's just the getting up or bending that he has little sqirts. On the 24th he had a follow up appointment with the physio guy and he says he's doing fine but maybe just a little behind. He was down to 2 pads but when he's at work it's 4 pads. Not that they are full but he just feels more comfortable changing them. He goes home at lunch so figures why not change it and then same with after work. On the weekends he really only uses 2 pads. If you think of it 1 to 2 onces really isn't that much. I just keep telling him to do his excercises which he is doing faithfully. There is a new post on here talking about robotic surgery and she said her husband had no leaking and I know Brad sure wishes that was him. I guess some are just really lucky that way. We are aiming at 3 months being pad free so if it comes before that great. One step at a time in this healing process and it all takes time. Good luck with your control issues too. Chris

 
Old 01-10-2010, 12:27 AM   #10
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Hi, My husband had prostate cancer surgery 2 months ago and still having a major problem with incontinence. You all are talking about wearing "pads" but he soaks 20 diapers a day! There is no way he can wear just pads. It sounds like he is very out of the normal with this. It's been very discouraging to him and he's trying to work with it like this (went back after 6 weeks) and it's so hard to work when he has to keep going to the bathroom to change. Do you all think my husband's problem is worse than the normal?

My best to all of you.

Harmony

 
Old 01-10-2010, 12:14 PM   #11
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Harmony5, Sorry to hear he is having so much problem.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harmony5 View Post
...he soaks 20 diapers a day!
By "diapers", I assume that you mean the "pull-up" type of absorbancy undergarments...like Depends-brand Absorbancy Underwear product for men, whereas the "pads" are like the Depends Guards product for men (which are very much not like women's pantiliner pads).

If he is soaking 20 per day 2 months after surgery, then this is absolutely outside of normal range, especially if there are no other mitigating circumstances and if he is working hard himself to try to control it & performing the needed post-surgery physical therapy (Kegel exercises).

If fact, from the pure volume of liquid required to "soak 20 per day" compared to a daily intake amount, then he must not be peeing hardly a drop on his own into the toilet.

That's 140 Absorbancy Underwear per week 2 months after surgery...that's a lot, and to answer your question: "Do you all think my husband's problem is worse than the normal?", yes, it is outside normal. If you haven't already done so, my opinion is that it is time to phone the urologist for help.

Hope my input helps...

Last edited by kcon; 01-10-2010 at 12:16 PM.

 
Old 01-11-2010, 05:35 AM   #12
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

For sure your husband's problem isn't normal. My husband is now 2 months post surgery (Nov. 10th) and he is now down to 1 light depends pad a day. When he weights it it comes in just under 1/2 ounce for the whole day. I would make an appoinment as soon as you can and have this checked out. Best of luck to you and your husband.

 
Old 01-13-2010, 11:35 AM   #13
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Thank you to both of you! Yes, I mean the Depends type pull up's he uses and they are totally soaked each time. He called the doctor and the doctor gave him a cystocopy yesterday. It showed a stricture and he took care of it but not totally because the dr. said it would make his leakage more. He said to come back in 2 months and if there is no improvement, they will discuss another treatment and maybe surgery. There were no other abnormalities the dr. could see.

 
Old 01-13-2010, 11:50 AM   #14
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Ugh!

Well, the doctor is looking at possible additional steps to take in the near future to fix the problem, so he is acknowledging that it is a problem. Unfortunately, right now for your husband, 2 months away probably doesn't sound like the "near future."

I'm curious...you didn't mention, but did the doctor say to do anything different between now and the 2-month follow-up??

Most surgeons strongly stress the importance of Kegel exercises as the most important post-surgery "physical therapy" to achieve continence improvement. Most of us got hand-outs or at least verbal instructions, some even went to on-site training sessions either before or after surgery about proper technique of Kegels and their importance. How strongly is your doctor pushing your husband to do this post-surgery PT...and how rigorously is your husband adhering to the exercise regimen?

 
Old 01-13-2010, 04:24 PM   #15
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Re: One week post cath removal, when will the leaking stop?

Hi Kcon,

He is doing the kegal exercises faithfully as the doctor instructed and he also got the handouts. I keep asking him if he is doing them and he said yes, everyday. He also tried medication a few weeks ago but it didn't help. Yes, 2 months isn't any time soon enough. He has a very good doctor at the Mayo Clinic so we're confident he is getting good care. It's just so hard on him with how severe it is as you can imagine.

Thanks!

 
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