You are to be commended for the care and support you are lending to your father.
You've already received some very insightful and well-researched responses to your query.
To add to what has been shared, I will offer a bit of my personal story, simply based on my own experience, because I think my story might be helpful for your father to hear about
I was diagnosed in 2013, with advanced prostate cancer. My PSA at diagnosis was over 100, which is higher than your father's PSA score. My prostate cancer had already spread into both of my lungs when I was diagnosed, which was a very sobering discovery for me. I was in my 40s when I was diagnosed, and had been in perfect health my entire life, so all of this was unexpected.
Working together as a team, my urologist and then my oncologist worked TOGETHER to work my PSA down over time. We started with LUPRON hormone shots, and month by month, my PSA began working its way down over time. I had to have incredible amounts of patience, watching that PSA number creep down over time, and I put 100% of my trust and faith in my doctors.
Over time, bit by bit, my doctors worked my PSA down to lower levels with the LUPRON shots. Right at that time, the new CHAARTED study was released, which
opened the door for me to pursue the newly adopted "early chemo" plan in the summer of 2014 and I was in the very first wave of patients treated in this country with the "early chemo" plan --- which helped work my PSA down even lower, as the ADT hormone shots continued.
Bit by bit, the Taxotere chemo treatments brought my PSA down some more to low decimal levels, for which I was grateful. After that, my doctors continued to work small miracles by experimenting with FIRMAGON hormone shots, and then ZOLODEX hormone shots, all of which have the same goal as the original LUPRON shots. In my case, my oncologist felt that the ZOLODEX shots were more effective for me than the LUPRON shots, but they are very similar in chemical nature.
I've had to be very patient at times, watching my PSA creep downward, with a few setbacks along the way, of course. In the last few months, my oncologist has added the medication called ZYTIGA, which I take each day, while still receiving the ZOLODEX hormone shots. ZYTIGA is one of the newer "breakthrough" medications approved by the F.D.A. in very recent years.
It has taken many months and lots of patience, but my doctors have moved heaven and Earth to help me keep my PSA levels in the low decimals ... something I never thought would be possible, from where I first started back in 2013. I have kept up my full-time career and ALL of my usual activities through all of this, and I am thankful every single day for that blessing in my life. I'm working my way into my third year of treatments since being diagnosed.
I've taught school for over twenty-five years and have continued to teach school full-time the past three years since being diagnosed --- teaching my students every day has meant the world to me, and I give them everything I've got. My school day begins and ends with hugs, handshakes, fist bumps, and high-fives from all my school kids --- how great is that ?!! I'm THANKFUL to still be here ... looking forward to my third Christmas since being diagnosed ... and I thought it might be important for you and your father to hear a direct story from someone who has been treated with the hormone shots continuously since being diagnosed, with some positive results.
Sending my best wishes to you and your father, as you face the future. Sending you some HOPE, COURAGE, and DETERMINATION in this message today !
Sent with all my best,
Iowa State Cyclone Fan
Post Edited (ISU-CycloneFan) : 11/10/2015 8:06:09 PM (GMT-7)