to continue health week here at dearmitt dot com, i have another morsel to share. i'm always listening out for people who have personal experience and insights about prostate matters. this is a dark tunnel all men who live long enough will one day be ushered into, and there seems to be a bit of flux in the knowledge at hand.
after telling my new hair guy, jerry, about my pending knee work i asked if he ever had any surgeries. dismissively he said, "nah. i just had my prostate out a few years back." as the word 'prostate' got floated out there, the guy in my head responsible for watching for things i care about gave my brain a hard nudge and told it, sharply, to get off its ass. i was ravenous. how old was he when it started? how was it detected? how hard were the decisions? what was the aftermath? i'm most interested in that last question as i hear conflicting things about periods and levels of recovery.
many of jerry's (and yes, i've noted that my new hair guy's name is a rhymer (how anfer would say it) with the infamous and ever-missed larry) stories begin, "well, i have this customer who is a fill in the needed occupation so i asked him...". when his prostate journey began, one of his customers told him to go check out this new facility in the county. the customer described it as not much more than a prostate chop shop. it's all they did, and per jerry, they did a lot of it. from the crack of dawn to the dip of dusk, this well-oiled, or perhaps vaselined, operation worked until their buckets spilled over with the fouled or suspect organs. what was special about this place was they used these fancy new machines, called a da vinci machine, designed to do nothing but cull prostates from paying customers. the machine looks like a five legged spider, hovers over a sleeping patient and is controlled by a doc sitting twenty feet away. when people who have used this new system compare notes with people who used old-school methods, it is a hands down drubbing (in favor of the inventor's namesake).
the mechanized procedure is more officially termed a da vinci prostatectomy (more).
when i told marty about it, she explained the reason it may do better than than conventional means is that when a human works on you, they have to make room for their hands to manuever so end up disrupting and thus damaging a lot more healthy tissue than the robotic arms which could burrow through the sensitive tissue, excise the organ and back out leaving nary a trace of its adventure. as my hair guy said, he had friends who were hospitalized for ten days and still ginger after six weeks from the traditional method, and he, my hair guy, was in and out in thirty six hours and back cutting hair in two weeks (albeit with the occasional break).
i asked jerry for any final advice he'd give to someone with this in their future. at this question he lowered his scissors, moved into my view, and with animated hand gestures told of another patient who asked the same question weeks before getting the procedure. jerry said, "i told him one thing ... get a bucket." he elaborated that after the procedure they catheterize you (serious bitch he adds) and give you this bag to carry around. he said he tried using the velco calf connectors and even wearing cargo-pocketed pants but in the end just ended up going into the basement and grabbing a bucket, throwing the always getting fuller bag in and just plodded around the house carrying his handled-bucket with him. unless he had to go out in public, which he wasn't in much mood for, he didn't mess with any of those ill-conceived antics. regarding what his buddy thought of his advice. since then any of his friends who say they're getting the prostate business, shortly before their procedure he appears before their door and gives them a gift: a shiny new bucket with a christmas bow on it.