Age at interview: 79
Brief Outline: In 2008 Emlyn found that he could not pass urine. At hospital, his urine was released via a urethral catheter, and he had surgery for prostate cancer. In 2011 he had difficulty passing urine again so he had more surgery and was given a suprapubic catheter.
Background: Emlyn was a lorry driver and factory worker before he retired. He is married and has one grown up daughter. Ethnic background/nationality: White British.

More about me...

In 2008 Emlyn found it hard to pass urine. He went to his GP who sent him to the hospital. There a nurse passed a urethral catheter to release his urine. Then he was admitted to hospital for surgery for prostate cancer. Ten days later he went home with the urethral catheter. After a while this was removed.
In 2011 Emlyn had more trouble passing urine. He went back to hospital where he had a “prostate scrape”, probably a transurethral resection of the prostate. When he woke up he had a suprapubic catheter instead of a urethral catheter. The catheter drains urine continuously. He finds that he has to change the urine bag about every three hours. Emlyn has had this type of catheter ever since January 2011 and finds it quite easy to manage. He goes to the hospital every three months to have the catheter replaced. He changes his drainage bag every week. He has a larger one for the night time.  
Emlyn has also had other treatment for his prostate cancer. In 2012 he had some radiotherapy. He also has hormone treatment. He feels quite well apart from getting pain in his penis, which he thinks may be due to the radiotherapy. He hopes that this will get better soon. He gets out and about and still drives his car and sings in the choir.



Emlyn notices his catheter only when the bag is full. He shows his leg bag. He gets a burning...

Emlyn notices his catheter only when the bag is full. He shows his leg bag. He gets a burning...

If anybody asks about it [living with a catheter], tell ‘em not to worry, you can handle it.
Tell them not to worry?
Not to worry, you can handle it okay. You don’t notice it. The only thing perhaps is when the bag gets full you’ve got to find somewhere, like a cubicle, a toilet to put, lift, to open it if you like, to open the tap to get it out. And if you leave it full you’ll find, I find that the burning starts.
Whereabouts is the burning?
In the penis, see.
Ah, so if it gets full?
Aye. That’s like I’ve had it once this morning, the burning, which is, you know, since I’ve got up saying what time is it now? So in about three and a half hours I’ve been, only had it once. You see, there is a dull ache there all the time but there’s nothing that you can’t handle.
If the bag gets full, does any urine come out of the penis?
No. It just aches.
Aye, ache.
You can see that it’s nearly full again, since this morning.
So that’s a picture of the bag,
The urine bag at the bottom of your leg.


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