Posted 12/4/2016 3:41 PM (GMT -7)
The idea was that if my PSA goes way down (in my case, each time it quickly went to undetectable), then we would do four 3-month shots (hence, 1 year).
Now, THIS time, I am probably going to be doing SBRT to my one positive lymph node in February.
I have an appointment with Dr. Lam on 2/8 and I guess we will discuss plans at length. I suspect he will want me to do at least 6 months, or maybe the full year. I'm not sure what the protocol is in such a situation. I'll also see what Dr. King says.
The hot flashes for me were much worse the second time on HT. In each case, they lessened greatly after 2 months and were gone by 3 months. The worst SE for me was the short-term memory loss. It is a horrible feeling to have these truly BLANK memories. That took 3+ months to completely resolve during the first vacation and as I said it resolved about 80% the second time through. Also, as I said, amazingly it never impacted my work knowledge. In fact, I even published a paper (my field is mathematics) during my first year on HT.
Another SE, which was rough on me: I had strange emotional issues. I would suddenly fly into a rage, cursing and using 4-letter words, even throwing things. Not my style or temperament. This would happen maybe a total of 2-3 times while on my year of HT. I couldn't explain it. All of a sudden, I would fly off the handle...about nothing. My wife took the brunt of it. The rage, fortunately would last for 3 minutes or so, and then it would be gone. It was uncontrollable. The only saving grace was that I knew it was the HT talking. I knew it, but still couldn't control it (kind of like being incontinent briefly after surgery!). I am NOT looking forward to going through that again. Another bad SE I had was weight gain. When I started on HT, I was at a relatively high for me 178 pounds. Then all of a sudden I started eating everything in sight and ballooned to 207 pounds. But I did adjust a bit. My current weight is 190-191 pounds, and I was down to 186 pounds. I also hated the loss of muscle/strength. In the gym, I could only do 50%-75% of what I could do before HT. I am now back to my original level. When on HT, they advise you to do strength training fairly rigorously, but the problem is that it is almost impossible to do (even at the lower weight level, exhaustion hits).
This has turned into a lengthy SE treatise.
Keep in mind, for anyone reading this, it is all do-able. I still wake up, go to work at a job I love, and I function and still enjoy life. This is true now, and was just as true while on HT.