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Thread: Exercising after da vinci surgery

  1. #1
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    Exercising after da vinci surgery

    Howdy: First of all, this is a great forum. I have been following it for several months and have found it to be a great source of excellent information as well as inspirational. I am scheduled to have da vinci surgury in August, and have a question regardig exercising after surgery.

    I have always been something of a fitness fanatic, adhering to a rigorous fitness routine for manhy years. I am anxious to get back into the swing of things as quickly after the surgury as possible. i will start to walk as much as possible of course, but wanted to get others opinion on strengthining exercises. I have used exercise cables (bands) for years and have found them to be a great alternative to weights (either free weights or machines). The bands come in various levels of resistence, as low as the equlivant of 10 lbs. on up to 100lbs. i have thought that I might purchase a set of light resistant cables (10-20 lbs) and start doing some upper body exercises to maintain muscle tone and some level of fitness while recuperating from the surgery. Does anyone have any experience and/or thoughts on this? I would appreciate your feedback.

  2. #2
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    Any lifting or exercises that mimic lifting will be banned for at least 4 months..After that, the amount of lifting you are allowed will be slowly increased. At the one year point, normal physical activity is usually permitted..Be SURE to ask your surgeon about ANY exercise plans you may have and get his okay. While the daVinci surgery leaves little external evidence, there is some major internal slicing and dicing involved and it's possible to pull a hernia with little effort..Walking is fine, but check with your doc about the upper-body stuff....
    PSA at age 55: 3.5, DRE negative.
    65: 8.5, DRE " normal", biopsy, 12 core, negative...
    66 9.0 DRE "normal", BPH, (Proscar)
    67 4.5 DRE "normal" second biopsy, negative.
    67.5 5.6, DRE "normal" U-doc worried..
    age 68, 7.0, third biopsy (June 2010) positive for cancer in 4 cores, 2 cores Gleason 6, one core Gleason 7. one core Gleason 9. RALP on Sept. 3, 2010, Positive margin, post-op PSA. 0.9, SRT , HT. Feb.2011 PSA <0.1 Oct 2011 <0.1 Feb 2012 <0.01 Sept 2012 0.8 June 2013 1.1, Casodex added, PSA 0.04 10/2013. PSA 0.32 1/14. On 6/14 PSA 0.4, "T"-5.

  3. #3
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    My lifting restriction was for six weeks. After that my doc told me I was limited to what my body could handle. I power walk in addition to elliptical training. Three-four weeks after surgery I was back up to three plus miles a day (albeit a little slower than normal). But it wasn't long after that I was back to my usual speed. I jumped on the elliptical at about three weeks but that was a little too much, so I laid off that for another week then eased back in. I wouldn't mess with bands or anything like that, because if you're standing up it's going to strain your abdomen. Now, I found that I could do some bicep curls if I was on a machine that totally isolated the biceps. But I kept the weight down a bit. Started that about four weeks post surgery. I also did a few ab crunchs at a little over four weeks, but with much lighter resistance than normal. Six weeks out I was pretty much back to normal although I had to be careful with the ab crunches for a couple of months. Sometimes I felt it wasn't good to do as many as usual. You'll know. You will probably need access to a good gym to find machines that totally isolate your upper body. Anyway, that's my story. Your mileage may vary. This isn't medical advice. Blah, blah. Good luck on your surgery, and sorry you have to be here.

    Dan
    Age 55 at Dx
    PSA 1.34 10/08
    PSA 1.93 04/10
    PSA 4.1 10/11, Free PSA 20%
    Biopsy 12/11 - One core 40%, rest negative, T1c, Gleason 3+3, Some PNI, Prostate 47.4g, PSA Density .086
    RALP City of Hope/Dr. Wilson 2/15/12. Pathology: Prostate 52 grams, 20% total involvement (bilateral), N0MX,
    T2c, Gleason 3+3, margins clear.
    PSA 3/12, 6/12, 10/12, 01/13, 06/13, 11/13: Undetectable

  4. #4
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    my doctor told me six week too
    46 years old
    father of 2
    psa 3.1
    gleson 3+4/7
    mri done
    pre op 5-19
    op 6-11-12
    cancer by nerves

  5. #5
    Moderator Top User HighlanderCFH's Avatar
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    After having my DaVinci surgery last November, I was ordered to not lift more than TEN POUNDS for the first month. As an example, a gallon of milk weighs about 10 pounds. You'll have similar restrictions with exercises, etc. I was told I could resume running (I jog 1 hour every day) after 6 weeks. To play it safe, I went 2 full months before resuming my running. Thanks to my previously developed endurance, I ran my first hour as if I had never stopped. Slight soreness in the legs for a couple days, nothing more.

    To give you a further example of the restrictions in the first month after the surgery, I returned home from Mayo Clinic 10 days after my surgery -- and was greeted by a lawnful of fallen leaves. I called back to Mayo and asked if I could rake them since there was no lifting involved. A very polite -- but VERY firm -- "NO" was my answer. Not even the torque from twisting my abdomen with a rake is acceptable. Basically you cannot do anything that might place any stress on the sutures from the robotic entry points OR on the work that took place within the surgical field.

    You'll need to faithfully follow the orders regarding any type of workouts. However, you will probably experience the same thing I did upon resuming your exercises -- since you are in great condition pre-op, your conditioning will quickly come back when the doctor allows you to start again.

    But, in the meantime, do not do anything that will send you back to the operating room to repair anything you might undo.

    Just be patient. The time will pass quickly & you'll be right back in the swing of things.

    Good luck to you!
    Chuck


    July 2011 local PSA lab reading 6.41 (from 4.1 in 2009). Mayo Clinic PSA Sept. 2011 was 5.7.
    Local urologist DRE revealed significant BPH, but no lumps.
    PCa Dx Aug. 2011 at age of 61.
    Biopsy revealed adenocarcinoma in 3 of 20 cores (one 5%, two 20%). T2C.
    Gleason score 3+3=6.
    CT of abdomen, bone scan both negative.
    DaVinci prostatectomy 11/1/11 at Mayo Clinic (Rochester, MN), nerve sparing, age 62.
    My surgeon was Dr. Matthew Tollefson, who I highly recommend.
    Final pathology shows tumor confined to prostate.
    5 lymph nodes, seminal vesicules, extraprostatic soft tissue all negative.
    1.0 x 0.6 x 0.6 cm mass involving right posterior inferior,
    right posterior apex & left mid posterior prostate. Right
    posterior apex margin involved by tumor over a 0.2 cm length, doctor says this is insignificant.
    Prostate 98 grams, tumor 2 grams.
    Catheter out in 7 days. No incontinence, occasional minor dripping.
    First post-op exam 2/13/12, PSA <0.1.
    Only semi-erections so far, with continued improvement.

  6. #6
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    Thanks to all for the good advice. I think I will by a pedometer and do the 10,000 step/day program, then gently progress to light exercise bands.

  7. #7
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    Everyone is different. I waited 6 weeks before I resumed any strength training. I went the slowest with the ab work and I still suffered a bit.

  8. #8
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    Exercise After Da Vinci Surgery

    Steve:

    Like you, I am a fitness fanatic. I was in great shape, but learned in January that I had prostate cancer. I left the hospital today Da Vinci surgery. I would love to learn from your experience. How long before you could run, lift weights, etc.? How long did it take you to "bounce back?"


    Brian

  9. #9
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    I'm in the process on deciding the treatment and I'm also a fitness adict and love golf. Would it also be several weeks before golf?

    Chuck;
    I noticed you said it was 10 days before you returned from Mayo. I'm considering the Cleveland Clinic and it is 6 hours away and plan to drive home with my wife 2-3 days later and return 8 days later for the catheter to be removed.
    Greg
    Greg, Diagnosed 1/17/13, TIc, Gleason 3+3, 3 positive cores (5%, 0%, 50%), PSA 4.7 (7/7/12), Excellent health (otherwise)
    Open prostatectomy 4/15/13 by Dr. Eric Klein, Cleveland Clinic. Nerve bundles and lymph nodes in tact.
    Pathology showed negative margins, Gleason 4+3, 108 gram prostate.

  10. #10
    Moderator Top User HighlanderCFH's Avatar
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    Hi Greg,

    It is possible that you could return home a few days after surgery, then return to the clinic for catheter removal. But it probably is not something they would recommend. You would have to be VERY careful so as not to have any incidents that would affect the catheter, collection bag, etc. You will also find that it is not the most comfortable thing in sitting in a car for 6 hours because your bottom is going to be a bit sore for a week or two.

    I went to mass a few days after my surgery (probably 5 days later) and took a nice, soft cushion to sit on because a hard bench was very uncomfortable. Not painful -- but not comfortable at all.

    I would suggest that you fly there and back -- both times -- to make it more comfortable for you. Ironically, it is a 6 hour drive for me from my house to Mayo Clinic. I'm not a big flier, but we decided to fly there for my surgery because I did not know how I'd be feeling if sitting in a car (my Mother went with me, but she does not drive) for 6+ hours on the way back home.

    It was more expensive, but I pre-planned a 10 day stay so I could allow for the surgery and then stay in the motel for the week after surgery to have the catheter removed. I then stayed there another couple days just to make sure I was okay. Then, 10 days post-op, we flew back home. I was very glad to have flown instead of sitting in a car for 6 hours.

    Everyone is different, but a mere 2-3 days post-op will probably make it quite uncomfortable to sit for that length of time. I suppose you could do it by stopping frequently to stretch your legs, take a walk, etc. In fact, walking as much as possible in the days immediately following the surgery is highly recommended.

    Congratulations on your stats -- you appear to have a VERY curable case and should recover pretty quickly and enjoy the rest of a very long life.

    Good luck!
    Chuck
    July 2011 local PSA lab reading 6.41 (from 4.1 in 2009). Mayo Clinic PSA 9/ 2011 = 5.7.
    Local uro DRE revealed significant BPH, no lumps.
    PCa Dx Aug. 2011 age of 61.
    Biopsy DXd adenocarcinoma in 3/20 cores (one 5%, two 20%). T2C.
    Gleason 3+3=6. CT abdomen, bone scan negative.
    DaVinci prostatectomy 11/1/11 at Mayo Clinic (Rochester, MN), nerve sparing, age 62.
    Surgeon was Dr. Matthew Tollefson, who I highly recommend.
    Final pathology shows tumor confined to prostate.
    5 lymph nodes, seminal vesicules, extraprostatic soft tissue all negative.
    1.0 x 0.6 x 0.6 cm mass involving right posterior inferior, right posterior apex & left
    mid posterior prostate. Right posterior apex margin involved by tumor over 0.2 cm length,
    doctor says this is insignificant.
    Prostate 98 grams, tumor 2 grams.
    Catheter out in 7 days. No incontinence, minor dripping for a few weeks.
    Post-op exams 2/13/12, 9/10/12, 9/9/13 PSA <0.1
    Firmer erections finally surfacing in August, 2014.

 
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