Hello again, everyone, and thank you so much for your responses to my latest post. The first thing I did was take your suggestion, rcroller, and read Todd's story. It is truly amazing and inspirational and a source of hope for all of us, I think.
And I also think there is much to what you say, logoslidat. These doctors (at least the ones Fred and I have been dealing with) all really do seem to be technicians in spite of the attempts to be as warm and personal as they can manage. It's hard to know if they can even think beyond the ingrained protocols they use on everyone, for I don't know whether they even see an actual individual human being in front of them, or an accumulation of body parts with an illness. The weird thing is that the urologist who told us to call hospice runs support groups and always talked to us for a long time, but he did not even think to start Fred on Casodex except as an afterthought. When he finished the end of life talk, he remarked that Fred's testosterone had gone from 10 up to 25 and so he could "try" Casodex which, in a month as it turned out, got both the testosterone and the psa back to where they had been the month before, suggesting that Fred is still not yet hormone refractory. Trying to cheer me up, a friend of mine remarked that maybe the urologist talked this way in order to recruit me into one of his support groups.
As for the Zometa, zufus, Fred had an "exploded" bone scan in April (part of which was the reason for the urologist telling us to call hospice). But from my reading, I think what showed up on the bone scan was the result of Fred's being diagnosed in October with a psa of 112 and no treatment being started until late December. This, too, ahd to do with the urologist's protocol.
If I've realized anything, it is to try to learn as much as I can, since Dr. Fred will not do anything in his own behalf, but has finally begun to read medical articles that I print out for him. And that is why I am so grateful to have found this forum. It is not only a source of the latest medical information, but of so much support and hope. I again thank you all and want you to know that my best thoughts and energy are with you.