Brian Wachowiak can tell you where to find all the best rest stops in Wisconsin.
And, no, he’s not a truck driver.
It’s because Brian lived with prostate issues for 10 years. He couldn’t make it through the night without repeated trips to the bathroom. And he couldn’t drive more than 30 miles before needing a pit stop.
While traveling to Indiana for a wedding in January 2012, he made an urgent stop at a fast food restaurant. Headed back to the highway, he took a wrong turn and had to drive another 10 miles before he could turn around. By the time he got back to his starting point, he needed yet another bathroom break … badly.
“It sounds comical,” says Brian, “But it wasn’t. My patience had finally run out.”
A former firefighter who had battled 15,000 blazes, Brian was tired of his enlarged prostate slowing him down.
“I was used to working 96 hours a week between 3 jobs,” says Brian, who served as Milwaukee Fire Department battalion chief, a private fire investigator and a fire science teacher at Milwaukee Area Technical College.
He knew it was time to get help. Brian turned to the urology specialists at Aurora Health Care.
In August 2012, he had a laser prostatectomy, a minimally invasive outpatient procedure that uses lasers to remove excess tissue from the prostate. The procedure unblocks urine flow. Just 2½ hours later, Brian walked out with only slight discomfort. He took over-the-counter pain medication and spent a few days recovering at home.
“I knew right away that something worked,” he says. “Within 24 hours of surgery, I already had a dramatic change. The catheter was removed on the second day and I was back in the game.”
“Dr. Laven was a godsend,” says Brian of his Aurora urologist. “My only side effect was happiness.”