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Incontinent husband

(22 Posts)
Gelisajams Sat 01-Jun-19 16:48:42

My husband has recently had a prostatectomy and earlier this week had the catheter removed. He was told that there was a very high risk of some incontinence but led to believe it would be sufficient to use a light pad.
He’s absolutely flooding with virtually no control. I keep reminding him this is normal and will slowly improve as he does the exercises. He feels he hasn’t the strength to do the exercises properly and is absolutely devastated and hates the necessary adult nappies. He normally has a very positive outlook but he’s so down about it all. I’m trying very hard to encourage him and have said it doesn’t matter, that’s what the pads are for. He says but it does matter! I feel so sad for him and completely helpless.
Has anyone else experienced this and can you assure us things will improve?

phoenix Sat 01-Jun-19 16:53:48

Sorry, no experience of this, but sending best wishes to both of you.

Gonegirl Sat 01-Jun-19 16:57:55

Same from me. Poor man.

mumofmadboys Sat 01-Jun-19 16:58:49

Early days. Give it a couple more days. If no better need to take a mid stream sample of urine if you can get one to the GP's to check for an infection. Needs to continue to drink plenty even though tempting not to! Infection is very common after catheterisation. Wish you well

BlueBelle Sat 01-Jun-19 16:59:58

I think it would be a huge problem for someone feeling positive about themselves and going out and about etc it will feel horrible for him I presume he is still under the hospital so can you ring and explain what is happening and see what their advice is It may need a simple adjustment but you won’t know unless you ask
I m sorry I can’t give more advice but I do hope he gets some reassurance and some help

jura2 Sat 01-Jun-19 17:00:13

Poor man. There is no right or wrong answer- it depends so much on his age, level of fitness and determination, and a lot more besides. He really should be getting support from his GP and specialist nurse and physio. Perhaps sitting on the loo for a few minutes every hour or two might help.

But it should get better and he must not give up and do his exercises which are the key to recovery.

Gelisajams Sat 01-Jun-19 17:02:51

Yes he’s on antibiotics for urine infection which started on Wednesday the day after the catheter was removed.
Thank you for good wishes. I feel so wretched while trying to be strong and cheerful for DH.

Lazigirl Sat 01-Jun-19 17:04:45

My OH had prostatectomy 9 years ago and had little control initially after catheter removed. This was very disheartening at first but did gradually improve. It is important to do the pelvic floor exercises because muscles have to strengthen to help regain bladder control. It took about 16 weeks for him to be pad free. It's normal to feel quite down after such a radical op without the indignity of incontinence, but hopefully it will improve. Some drinks, ie caffeine and alcohol can make things worse, but it's important not to restrict fluids.

mumofmadboys Sat 01-Jun-19 17:06:03

He may be on the wrong antibiotics. Once the course is finished if symptoms are no better he needs to send another sample to the lab. Incontinence goes with infection so getting on top of the infection will hopefully help++

Gran2028 Sat 01-Jun-19 17:07:25

Of course it matters. For men who have enjoyed good health all their lives it is a personal insult when their body 'lets them down'.
I think women cope better with such challenges since we have simply to cope with all our various issues throughout our lives.
Flooding is perfectly normal after a catheter is removed. Effectively the muscles involved are redundant when the catheter is in situ and therefore have to be retrained .
Control/sensation will improve and return byt the exercises are ABSOLUTELY essential.
This is the same situation after hip/knee replacement.. this surgery is amazing. But it is the physio that secures the ultimate optimum outcome.

crazyH Sat 01-Jun-19 17:08:51

He probably was a very active man and this setback has devastated him. I'm sure things will improve and he will find that this is just a minor inconvenience. (Btw, I always use a panti- liner due to stress incontinence.)
I hope things's hard I know, but like everything else, the early days are the worst. I'm sure he'll be ok.

Gran2028 Sat 01-Jun-19 17:11:22

I think incontinence is one of our last taboos.. although now its on the telly.. its okay for women!!??
Please reassure your husband ..this is not forever, he needs to do the work. He has com
This e through the symptoms,the diagnosis,the its rehab.
This WILL pass, and he will regain his freedom and confidence.
And you will be right there beside him.

Gelisajams Sat 01-Jun-19 17:16:48

Yes, he was very active. He did a thirteen mile walk over the moors the day before the op as he knew it would be a while before he’d do it again.
Dr sent his sample to the lab so hopefully that base is covered.

boheminan Sat 01-Jun-19 17:31:02

This is very pertinent as my partner is recovering from a long haul of radiotherapy treatment for prostate cancer. The main side affect throughout has been incontinence and he was catheterised for 5 weeks due to an infection.

Treatment finished 4 weeks ago and only now is the weeing becoming slightly less frequent. He was so demoralised having to wear pads which sometimes leaked.

However, yesterday for the first time in months he got through the night without wetting himself. A red letter day indeed. This is unfortunately a very common symptom/side effect of prostate problems, but yes, it too it will pass.

Luckygirl Sat 01-Jun-19 19:02:55

My OH is incontinent of urine (and the bowels are a bit unpredictable too!) as he has PD.

I hope your OH sorts his problem out as time passes since the op; but just to say that we do manage his urinary incontinence relatively well with a conveen catheter and a leg bag. The conveen is like a condom with a pipe leading from it - you roll it on and it has built-in glue - sounds painful, but once you get the knack of it it is OK. It connects to a leg bag; and during he night to a bigger bag. It just becomes a daily ritual.

stella1949 Sat 01-Jun-19 19:39:35

I'm sure it will improve with time .

Isn't it funny how men are so demoralised by incontinence, but women just get on with it and use a pad. I guess we're used to a lifetime of body malfunctions .

Doodle Sat 01-Jun-19 19:53:37

Don’t panic! Firstly this can be a common problem. Secondly you may need to contact continence nurses. My DH was not dry at might until the nurse persuaded him to try without the pads. He was fine. Tell your DH this is early days and get in touch with the nurses. Hopefully he will be fine soon.

Teebles64 Tue 04-Jun-19 22:24:21

My husband had a radical prostatectomy 18 months ago. He too suffered leakage after catheter removal. He worked really hard at pelvic floor exercises both pre and post op and was referred to a specialist continence physio. The most important thing she taught him was not to keep going to the loo "just in case" but to retrain the bladder. By 3 months post op he was completely continent, exercises and cycles daily. He is probably fitter than he has ever been and most importantly is cancer free. Tell your husband not to be despondent and to put the effort in with the exercises. It is worth it.

SamanthaH137 Fri 07-Jun-19 10:32:25

I had a similar problem with my husband after he had a prostatectomy. A Doctor told him about pelvic floor exercises, and although not completely convinced, these actually helped.
It also helped him to talk to other people about it anonymously online, on related forums. This forum was great for him. I also recommend, where you can talk about a lot of incontinence related topics. They also have advice pages for managing it, etc.
What is his diet like? What he eats can actually also make a difference.

ElaineI Sat 08-Jun-19 00:06:17

The exercises are crucial and really baby steps to begin with so keep up with the encouragement as he will get stronger. It can take much longer than you are led to believe to gain better control but it will happen. Doctors tend to under estimate the length of time to gain control but nurses and physios would say this is very early for this to happen and could take several weeks/months. I used to do continence assessments as a community nurse before I retired last year and this is a very common problem following prostate surgery. It will improve.

harrigran Sat 08-Jun-19 11:51:55

I know how difficult it is for men to accept loss of bladder control. DH has just had two months of radiotherapy which had to be carried out with a full bladder. Travel times on top of treatment time caused anxiety.
Tena pants were the answer to fear of accidents.

travelsafar Sun 09-Jun-19 08:15:02

mumofmadboys i agree about possible UTI. Having worked for many years with the elderly it was a common occurance after being fitted with a catheter unfortunately. Sometime people can retain a residue of urine in the bladder after passing urine which can become infected. Hope it will be resolved quickly for your DH.