I am new to this forum but have been reading with great interest about those that have gone through Provenge.
My father (age 75) recently completed Provenge treatment at the beginning of July. Since then, he has been experiencing a few of the side effects cited- namely back pain, constipation and some chills. The chills seems to have worn off, but it is the back pain that appears more pressing. Any feedback on how long these side effects can last? Do they come and go or last long periods of time -i.e. months? There doesn't seem to be specific information on this type of thing.
I don't have exact numbers, but he was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2001 and had RP. Cancer was confined to the prostate and was caught early per the doctors. He underwent radiation after that and hormone therapy (Casdoex and Lupron) and except for one incidence of a slightly rising PSA around 2004-2005 which was managed with hormones, he had been in remission with no issues and has been checked regularly. He was recently diagnosed with a recurrence in April 2013 with a PSA of 16. A bone scan revealed mets to a couple of areas on the spine. I believe Lupron was given which brought PSA back down to 12 but then it went back up to 16. He consulted with his local doctor in Chicago and went to MD Anderson who concurred he didn't have to do anything right away and could wait... both suggested Provenge as a treatment he should consider. He immediately wanted to proceed. Side effects came more after the second infusion and after the last one.
Treatment was completed in early July. Recent PSA test from two weeks ago showed it jumping to 36. Not surprised as I know Provenge doesn't reduce the PSA but scary. Hard to know if back pain he is experiencing is from Provenge or there are further mets on his back within the month he had this treatment. He has always had back pain off and on in his life... very active, fit, healthy lifestyle and enjoys golf, now very scared and cautious to do much physical activity. With knowledge of the mets on his back, I think it has made him more cautious. He's going to discuss with his doctor -they don't appear too concerned but I wonder if he should get a scan now. He wasn't supposed to get a scan until several months from now so they could determine how he was responding to the Provenge as far as any new bone mets, etc.
Any feedback from those that have gone through Provenge and what they may have experienced with side effects would be greatly appreciated. Does it get worse before it gets better?