Stressed in the Midwest

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New Member

Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 1/6/2011 9:06 PM (GMT -6)   

My "journey" as it is called here begins tomorrow. I have been a year plus lurker here and appreciate all the information I have absorbed. I began lurking here in Oct of 2010 after psa at GP tested 5.7 and was referred to a Uro. I did not care for the first Dr and made an appointment with another and we seemed to click. New Uro recommended a biopsy and during the DRE and he had no comments other than slightly enlarged prostate. I requested (do to having sex the night before the first psa) and received another psa test and he scheduled the biopsy.  I received the results from the second psa test and it came in at 4.1 and I called and cancelled the biopsy. Uro objected but I thought 4.1 was in the ball park for a 58 year old and was not looking forward the biopsy. I felt from my research the elevated psa was from not knowing I should have abstained prior to the test.

Next psa in Oct 10, went to 7.6 and back to the Uro. Biopsy scheduled for Dec 20th and again only DRE comment was enlarged prostate. I watched the entire biopsy and needle being fired to obtain the 12 samples. Uro comment after biopsy was see you in 6 months, I see nothing from the ultrasound that concerns me other than prostate enlargement.

I didn't think much more about and enjoyed the holidays and then the call came. The Dr would like for you to come and see him your biopsy results were positive. That appointment is tomorrow 1/7 and my stress level has maxed out for the last week and sleep is hard to come by.

I am fortunate to have a loving, supportive wife by my side and always with me at my appointments. We both have read and re-read Surviving Prostate Cancer and Robert Marckini's You Can Beat Prostate Cancer and during the past year we have not missed many web sites concerning PcA.

I have 3 pages of questions to ask tomorrow and hope for the best although the worst keeps me tired and sleepless.

Thanks for reading.

Elite Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25393
   Posted 1/6/2011 9:16 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome, and thanks for joining us. Glad you have written questions, as your consultation will be stressful enough. Sorry you have to join the club. Please let us know what your situation is, and feel free to ask all the questions here you possibly want. Good luck.

David in SC
Age: 58, 56 dx, PSA: 7/07 5.8, 10/08 16.3
3rd Biopsy: 9/08 7 of 7 Positive, 40-90%, Gleason 4+3
open RP: 11/08, on catheters for 101 days
Path Rpt: Gleason 3+4, pT2c, 42g, 20% cancer, 1 pos marg
Incont & ED: None
Post Surgery PSA: 2/09 .05,5/09 .1, 6/09 .11. 8/09 .16
Post SRT PSA: 1/10 .12, 4/8 .04, 8/6 .06 11/10 Not taking it
Latest: 6 Corr Surgeries to Bladder Neck, SP Catheter since 10/1/9, SRT 39 Sess/72 gy ended 11/09, 21 Catheters, Ileal Conduit Surgery 9/23/10

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 1152
   Posted 1/6/2011 9:27 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome Triplex,

Sorry that you have to join this club. You are so welcome to come here anytime and ask questions.

One thing people forget to ask for at the first appointment is a copy of the biopsy report. It would be a good idea to start a file with copies of any reports you can get from now on relating to your prostate cancer.

Another suggestion would be to request the doctor to send your slides to a pathologistwho specialises in prostate cancer. A non-specialist pathologist has hundreds of diseases they look at and reading the pathology of the prostate is an art. Insist on having your slides re-read by Bostwick or Epstein. Many of us have had their biopsy results change significantly after being re-read.

I know this is not an easy time for you. My husband and I were in your shoes in June last year. One thing that helped us tremdously was taking charge of our own knowledge of this illness - two books I can suggest are "The guide for surviving prostate cancer" by Dr Walsh and "The primer on prostate cancer" by Stephan Strum.

All the best,
Husband's age: 52. Sydney Australia.
Family history: Mat. grandfather died of PC at 72. Mat. uncle died of PC at 60. He has hereditary PC.
PSA: Aug07 - 2.5|Feb08 - 1.7|Oct09 - 3.67 (free PSA 27%)|Feb10 - 4.03 (free PSA 31%) |Jun10 - 2.69. DRE normal.
Biopsy 28Apr10: negative for a diagnosis of PC however 3 focal ASAPs “atypical, suspicious but not diagnostic” for PC. Review of biopsy by experienced pathologist, 1/12 core: 10% 3+3 (left transitional), 1/12 core: ASAP (left apex)
Nerve sparing RP, 20Aug10 with Dr Stricker. Post-op path: 3+4 (ISUP 2005). Neg (margins, seminal vesicles, extraprostatic extension). Multifocal, with main involvement in the fibro-muscular zone. T2C.
Post RP PSA,
Lab 1: Sep10 – 0.02|Nov10 – 0.03|Dec10 – 0.03
Lab 2: Nov 10 - 0.01|Dec10 – 0.01

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 4274
   Posted 1/6/2011 9:51 PM (GMT -6)   
Dear Triplex:
Sorry you have to join us but welcome to HW.  Unfortunately you are one of several new members this week who have just learned they have PCa.  Please come back and let us know your specific stats after you meet with you doctor.  None of us are physicians here but there are many good people who have experience, knowledge and caring that will help you however they can.
Hopefully your  numbers will be such that you have many options..
Best regards and good luck,
Tudpock (Jim)
Age 62 (64 now), G 3 + 4 = 7, T1C, PSA 4.2, 2/16 cancerous, 27cc. Brachytherapy 12/9/08. 73 Iodine-125 seeds. Procedure went great, catheter out before I went home, only minor discomfort. Everything continues to function normally as of 12/8/10. PSA: 6 mo 1.4, 1 yr. 1.0, 2 yr. .8. My docs are "delighted"! My journey:

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 739
   Posted 1/6/2011 9:58 PM (GMT -6)   
Triplex, another web site definitely worth a look, certainly helped me, when I was first diagnosed..................Cheers Kev
Age 52yrs [Gold Coast Qld, Australia]
PSA 4 Gleason 7 [3+4=7]
RP 24/12/08 Dr Philip Stricker [Sydney]
Upgrade Gleason Score 7.6 [4+3=7]
Margin status- Focal Involvement
Nil - EPE
ED- okay with Meds.
PSA at 2 yrs, no change remains 0.03
"Everyday in Every-way I Get Better'

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2010
Total Posts : 3892
   Posted 1/6/2011 10:27 PM (GMT -6)   
First, I would let your doctor give his presentation and report and when he asks "Do you have any questions??" THEN pull out your three page list..I suspect many of them will have already been answered..
Age 68.
PSA at age 55: 3.5, DRE normal. Advice, "Keep an eye on it".
age 58: 4.5
" 61: 5.2
" 64: 7.5, DRE "Abnormal"
" 65: 8.5, " normal", biopsy, 12 core, negative...
" 66 9.0 "normal", 2ed biopsy, negative, BPH, Proscar
" 67 4.5 DRE "normal"
" 68 7.0 third biopsy positive, 4 out of 12, G-6,7, 9
RRP Sept 3 2010, pos margin, one pos vesicle nodes neg. Post Op PSA 0.9 SRT, HT NOW

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 2692
   Posted 1/6/2011 10:29 PM (GMT -6)   

Most of us have been there, done that. Sounds like you are approaching it rationally. Unfortunately, the unknown usually causes anxiety in us. Can't be avoided.

How we respond tho, can be helped, or at least controlled. There is a phrase that surfaces frequently on here. "It is what it is." That is a fact. No amount of worry, fretting, crying, whatever will change those facts. The more you can convince yourself of that fact, the easier it will be for you to approach the problem calmly and rationally.

While you can't change what it is, you can definitely have an impact on
what it will be. You are already off to a good start. Written questions, reading books, getting on the Internet. There was a good suggestion to stat a file, and get all PSA results, lab tests, and pathology in writing. Multiple opinions are a requirement. Don't rush into anything, and be sure you understand all the treatment options and the immediate and long term side effects.

Welcome to Healing Well. This is not a death sentence. You will have many years of good life, even if it tuns out to be an aggressive case. I would recommend you learn how to enjoy life in maybe a different way. Watch the sunsets, smell the roses twice, be sure you tell those you love that you love them often.

i wish you well on your visit with the doctor. Be sure and question him, he is a doctor, not a deity. You are in charge of your future.
Age 58, PSA 4.47 Biopsy - 2/12 cores , Gleason 4 + 5 = 9
Da Vinci, Cleveland Clinic  4/14/09   Nerves spared, but carved up a little.
0/23 lymph nodes involved  pT3a NO MX
Catheter and 2 stints in ureters for 2 weeks .
Neg Margins, bladder neck negative
Living the Good Life, cancer free  6 week PSA  <.03
3 month PSA <.01 (different lab)
5 month PSA <.03 (undetectable)
6 Month PSA <.01
1 pad a day, no progress on ED.  Trimix injection
No pads, 1/1/10,  9 month PSA < .01
1 year psa (364 days) .01
15 month PSA <.01

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 3149
   Posted 1/7/2011 8:28 AM (GMT -6)   
Demand and get a copy of your actual pathology report, yours by law in USA...people herein might help you decipher it more precisely. Best of luck with the 3 pages of questions...I bet the docs hate having to answer that many questions, especially with supposedly straight precise answers (PCa is full of inconsistencies). Almost like being put on trial for them, perhaps.

Ask if you can tape record the session and also take your spouse or whomever for second set of ears. Once you hear PCa....your mind goes fubar into perhaps the darkness of the Twilight Zone (lol) and you might not hear it all clearly. Just trying to give you a reality check on PCa, the experts don't agree on everything but you can learn plenty and fast when highly motivated. Words of advice always question anything and all the time...for your best interests.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 7084
   Posted 1/7/2011 9:12 AM (GMT -6)   
Zufus has a good point on the recorder. My doctors have had no problem with them (just be sure you ask).
When I listened to the conversation later, I realized there was a terrible gap between what he said and what I heard.

Cajun Jeff
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 4119
   Posted 1/7/2011 9:18 AM (GMT -6)   
Treplex, Today is you consult day. Take a deep breath and hear what the Dr is telling you as if he were talking about someone else. I agree with the other. Keep the questions to yourself till he ask if you have questions then present the paper.

Do NOT make a decision on treatment today in the Dr.s office! Go home process everything that has been said and do consider a second opinion. It never hurts to get a different view. Uro almost always recoment surgery but see Do like I am saying not like I did. meet with a rariiontion oncologist. Not recomending one of the orther for you but saying get the info before you pull the trigger.

Do keep us posted about the consult.

Cajun Jeff
9/08 PSA 5.4 referred to Urologist
9/08 Biopsy: GS 3+4=7 1 positive core in 12 1% cancer core
10/08 Nerve-Sparing open radicalSurgery Path Report Downgrade 3+3=6 GS Stage pT2c margins clea
r3 month: PSA <0.1
19th month: PSA <0.1
2 year PSA <0.1
Only issue at this time is ED but getting better

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 2680
   Posted 1/7/2011 9:29 AM (GMT -6)   


You'll probably be home from the doc by the time you read this comment, but I want to second the suggestion that you either take notes, take a tape recorder, or take a spouse with you to the visit.

My wife has accompanied me into the exam room many times, and esp. for the biopsy results and the pre-surgery meeting.  She's an R.N. and seems to hear "everything," whereas I tended to be so preoccupied with the word "cancer," that my hearing was much more selective.  And I consider myself a good listener, having worked as a public information officer for 30 years where I frequently would be briefed on a complex series of events, get the facts straight, and be able to discuss everything accurately with media later.

Good luck to you, and please let us know how things went.  You're among friends here.  We've all been there.

James C.
Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 4463
   Posted 1/7/2011 10:33 AM (GMT -6)   
Sorry you have to be here. You will probably be done with the appointment by now, so I hope things went well and you got your questions answered. Take your time making any decisions. Let us know how it goes,
James C. Age 63
Gonna Make Myself A Better Man
4/07: PSA 7.6, 7/07 Biopsy: 3 of 16 PCa, 5% involved, left lobe, GS6
9/07: Nerve Sparing open RP, Path: pT2c, 110 gms., clear except:
Probable microscopic involvement-left apical margin -GS6
3 Years: PSA's .04 each test until 04/10-.06, 09/10-.09, 01/11-.09
ED-total-Bimix 30cc

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2010
Total Posts : 102
   Posted 1/7/2011 11:01 AM (GMT -6)   
The afore mentioned posts reflect the goodness of mankind. We are all brothers in the fight against pc, and we wish for you and your family the very best life has to offer. keep us posted on your progress and always remember it does get better.
Age 67. Robotic prostatectomy 10/26/2010, due for RT in Janury 0f 2011. Eight of 12 lobes positive. Gleason Score 4+4=8, Margin envolvement was present with adipose tissue invasion and perineural invasion, glandular and stromal hyperplasia present,pT3 pNO and no evidence of metastatic adenocarcinoma. 1st psa after surgery Nov. 24, 2010 was .3
HT started Nov. 24, 2010.

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 121
   Posted 1/7/2011 12:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello Triplex,

As others have mentioned, we're sorry you need to be here but are pleased to welcome you. PCa is certainly serious and reason for concern, but not the end of the road.

After my initial diagnosis I consulted with another urologist and an oncology radiologist. I read Dr. Walsh's book and researched everything I could on the internet, including this site. When I decided on a course of treatment, I was at peace with the decision. (To be honest, I really didn't want to do anything.)

You mentioned your wife is supportive. Great! The women in our lives are extremely important during times of stress, illness and especially somthing like this. PCa involves both of you.

Please know there are a lot of caring people on this forum. They've been helpful to me and we look forward to hearing from you.

Age 61, Diagnosed July 2010
PSA 04/09 - 2.5; 05/10 - 3.7; 07/10 - 4.7
DRE and Ultrasound - Negative
Size at biopsy - 32 grams
T1C, 3+3=6, 1 core of 12 60% positive
da Vinci nerve sparing RP 10/29/10
Post op biopsy indicated bilateral Gleason 6 tumors
Continent 90% and hopeful
Minor ED - 85% naturally, 95% with Cialis
6 week PSA - "undetectable"

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2010
Total Posts : 94
   Posted 1/7/2011 1:38 PM (GMT -6)   

Good luck today. Let us know how it goes!

New Member

Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 1/7/2011 5:33 PM (GMT -6)   

Thanks, for the words of encouragement and support. I'm nowhere near a PCa support group and it helped just hearing from a few who have "been there done that" My wife of nearly 40 years is my rock  but all who responded knew what I was going through.

Results were better than I expected and my Uro stayed  (a little over an hour) with us until every question we had was answered.


L Lateral Base 5%, G 3+3=6

Right Base 40%,  G 3+3=6

R Lateral Base 20%, 3+3=6

Right Mid 30%, G 3+3=6


The other 8 samples Benign


At my age (58) Uro recommends surgery. My choices with him is are open robotic.  We discussed every form of treatment available and he is OK with whatever I end up deciding and will remain my Dr if I decide to go elsewhere. He stated he has performed over 1500 open and 250 robotic.  I will use the weekend to decide on where I will get a second opinion.


No sure what else to add, except I'm sure to sleep better tonight.

Cajun Jeff
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 4119
   Posted 1/7/2011 6:48 PM (GMT -6)   
Triplex. Those are not bad numbers. I am impressed that you Dr did not push for surgery. You are doing the right thing to process and plan you stratagy. Do keep us posted.

Cajun Jeff
9/08 PSA 5.4 referred to Urologist
9/08 Biopsy: GS 3+4=7 1 positive core in 12 1% cancer core
10/08 Nerve-Sparing open radicalSurgery Path Report Downgrade 3+3=6 GS Stage pT2c margins clea
r3 month: PSA <0.1
19th month: PSA <0.1
2 year PSA <0.1
Only issue at this time is ED but getting better

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 2692
   Posted 1/7/2011 7:27 PM (GMT -6)   
The biopsy says that you have some time. You could most likely take 2 or 3 months to make your move, and not influence the outcome at all. All 6's is great, indicating it is not aggressive.

Take some deep breaths, take your wife out for dinner and a movie, and maybe a iittle more later. Take a day or two off, and then start to process it. I would certainly consider Brachy with your age and results.

Good luck
Age 58, PSA 4.47 Biopsy - 2/12 cores , Gleason 4 + 5 = 9
Da Vinci, Cleveland Clinic  4/14/09   Nerves spared, but carved up a little.
0/23 lymph nodes involved  pT3a NO MX
Catheter and 2 stints in ureters for 2 weeks .
Neg Margins, bladder neck negative
Living the Good Life, cancer free  6 week PSA  <.03
3 month PSA <.01 (different lab)
5 month PSA <.03 (undetectable)
6 Month PSA <.01
1 pad a day, no progress on ED.  Trimix injection
No pads, 1/1/10,  9 month PSA < .01
1 year psa (364 days) .01
15 month PSA <.01

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2010
Total Posts : 99
   Posted 1/7/2011 9:34 PM (GMT -6)   


Welcome to the forum. Your numbers are very similar to what mine were at the time of my biopsy. I had the biopsy in late April 2009 and surgery in early July. I took some time to pray, collect my thoughts, and discuss treatment options. My uro, like yours, had recommendations but encouraged me to explore all treatment options available and make an informed decision. Because the cancer was caught early and did not appear to be overly aggressive, I was able to squeeze in a trout fishing trip and some vacation time with my wife. You mentioned that she is supportive; lean on her, my wife is my best friend. I would not be as far along as I am without her. This forum is full of people who are going through the same thing you are, lean on them too. I wish I would have found this forum earlier. You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

Take care,


Age 53...51 when diagnosed.
2/09 PSA 11...GP discoverd during yearly physical...referred to Urologist
Biopsy found cancer, Gleason score of 6.
July 2009...Nerve-Sparing open radical prostatectomy.
Doing very well...only issue is ED and that is getting better.

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2010
Total Posts : 264
   Posted 1/8/2011 6:34 AM (GMT -6)   
Triplex, Welcome to the forum.

I'm not sure where you are in the midwest. If you are in the Chicagoland area I would like
to invite you to the next support group meeting at the Chicago Prostate Cancer Center in
Westmont, IL. The next meeting is on Feb. 2 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
age 57 2/2010
PSA Feb 8.2
biopsy 2/2010 - 2 of 8 left & 2 of 8 right positive, Gleason 3+4=7
attended support group - advised to get a second opinion
second opinion on pathology from Johns Hopkins 4+4=8
PSA 15 4/2010
5 weeks IMRT 4/2010-6/2010 at Copley Hospital in Aurora, IL
91 palladium 103 seeds 7/2010 at Chicago Prostate Center, Westmont, IL
PSA Oct 3.97, Dec 2.78
no ED or incontinence

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 420
   Posted 1/8/2011 12:41 PM (GMT -6)   
Your Gleason 6 means you have plenty of time to look at all treatment options. Do a lot of research and spend some more time on this site. Lots of good information and support here. I'm an example of someone who ended up choosing a different treatment option after doing my "homework" and reading the accounts of members here on HW.
Age 67 PSA 4.5 Biopsy 9/4/09 Bostwick Labs 5 of 8 sections (5 of 11 cores) positive-Gleason 3+3=6 Stage T1
BT on 12/11/09 (84 seeds of Palladium 103) Home same day/no catheter. Some burning, frequency, urgency for 6 weeks. No incontinence, mild ED. Normal activity within 3 days. 25 IGRT sessions ending 3/22/10 - some fatigue until 30 days after last treatment. PSA as of 12/9/10 - 0.1

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 664
   Posted 1/8/2011 12:50 PM (GMT -6)   
Best of luck to you. Midwest is big, however if you anywhere near the St. Louis area I highly recommend the Siteman Cancer Center and the Wash-U folks for a second opinion.


Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2010
Total Posts : 172
   Posted 1/8/2011 12:53 PM (GMT -6)   
Best of wishes to you Triplex! and If you are in the Tulsa area I can give you several recomendations of who to see or NOT see.
age 44 when diagnosed 45 now
RRP 9-28-10
gleason 3+3=6
pathology report all clear
11-1-10 PSA 0.02
3 month PSA 0.00
bladder control 3 weeks post cath. removal!
Osbon pump works great!
some noctural erections stated 12-01-10
5mg Cialis daily 1-3-11 able to get short semi erections(60-75%) with effort daily
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