Monday, August 27, 2012

Da Vinci Surgery, lies, dam lies and statistics

With the advent of Robotic Surgery the majority of men who are diagnosed with Prostate Cancer are choosing this option. Here are some of the claims:
1. One Day Hospital Stay
2. Rapid Return to Work
3. Rapid return of urinary control
4. Rapid return of erectile functioning

17 months post surgery he's my experience:
1. My one day hospital stay turned into two since I threw up after breakfast. I was in more pain on the morning I was supposed to be discharged than I was the night following my surgery. I needed a 2 day stay. My 90 mile ride home was unbelievably painful. A shot of  a narcotic, and a donut pillow should be given to any man who has a long ride home from the treatment center

2. It was 3 months before I returned to work

3. That's because I didn't get a "rapid return of urinary control" I was going through 15 diapers a day for 12 weeks. Now I still have stress incontinence, meaning I'll leak urine if I sneeze, bend down, laugh, or cough. I need to wear a pad every day.

4. Climacturia-leaking urine during (or before an orgasm) has been an issue for me since surgery. While the volume of urine is less. I still leak. No one mentioned this side effect to me prior to surgery.

5. While some men have immediate urinary and erectile functioning after surgery, there's a large majority of men like me, who will not have a return of functioning for 18-24 months. Is there any man who thinks 18-24 months represents a "rapid return" of erectile functioning?

6. The necessity of penile rehab. It's very possible that simply waiting for the nerve bundles to heal can result in permanent impotence. Without a good blood flow to the penis, it is possible to develop a venous leak.
If a man cannot get an erection with ED meds post surgery, as awful as this sounds, penile injections will prevent venous leak.

These are just a few things men should know before they go under the Robotic Knife.  My wife and I wrote a book titled "I Left My Prostate In San Francisco-Where's Yours? which should be released in December. In this book we go over these and many more issues men and couples should be prepared for if Robotic Surgery is your treatment choice.