Bobby Mac said...
... I understand if it was not found until years later it could grow into a high volume disease and could have been a life threatening disease.
Yes sir...exactly the point. Perhaps there are people on here who are confused about what to do and are not seeing the signs right in front of them. If the story can help one person get a test then it's a good story
If I may tell my own story here. I am not a salesman and my storytelling skills are not as captivating. But if I had not given up so easily then my cancer could have been treated before it began to spread.
In 2012 during a routine physical (I had one every year) my doctor said my PSA had "reached four" and I should see a urologist. He also referred me to a dermatologist who ended up treating a few minor skin cancers. I saw the same urologist I had been seeing for a couple decades. In 2001 he had excised a spermatoceil (sp?). He told me that the PSA level of 4 is not anything to be concerned about
. Rather, only a sudden spike would be cause for concern, and mine had gradually been climbing for the past decade. I believed him. First mistake. I should have been suspicious, but he was the doctor.
I did mention to him that what remained of my right testicle had been painful since after the surgery a decade earlier. He said it should come out. We arranged that. The surgery was done. A year later I returned for a followup and he said everything was fine. I asked him for a DRE,
saying it had been over a year since my prostate had been checked. He did so and said everything was fine.One month later
I had a recurrence of an infection elsewhere in my body and was on several different antibiotics. As part of the blood work I requested that a PSA be included. My doctor said with some alarm that my PSA was 9.5 and again said I should see my urologist. The Urologist ordered a biopsy, which turned out to be negative. I asked what do we do next and he said another biopsy. I said, so you're going to keep poking at it until something develops? He said we can treat it with medicine.
That began what was basically a two year course of Cipro. It wasn't supposed to be that way, but my wife and I were in the process of retiring and moving 1000 miles away... and with that "out of the way" I didn't get around to planning for that second biopsy for another year. My new GP in Florida did a full physical and told me my PSA was 25. He did a DRE and said he could feel two bumps on the right side of my prostate. I told him the story about
the biopsy and he asked if there had been an MRI associated with that biopsy, and I said no.
When we returned up north to sell our house I saw my urologist and told him about
my experience with my new GP in Florida. He did a DRE and dismissed the bumps as "concretions". I looked that up on Dr Google, which didn't really tell me much. My Urologist then said he was retiring at the end of the month and his partner would take over my case. His partner ordered an MRI which found the tumor on the right side of my prostate. By now the cancer that supposedly "wasn't there" had already begun to spread. From there my story becomes a rather typical T3B story. But two years had passed.
I suppose I should have been more suspicious all along. I knew nothing about
the high rate of false negatives from ultrasound biopsies. I did not know that PSA going from 4 to 9 to 12 and finally 25 was reason for alarm. I did not know there were forums like this one. Of course, because as far as I knew, I did not have cancer. My urologist had proven that to me.
If I knew then what I know now, I would have sought a different specialist as soon as my old GP told me my PSA was 4.
Thanks for reading my story.
2014-15: PSA 9,12,20,25 Neg DRE, Neg TRUS biopsy
2016: MRI Fusion biopsy, Rt Base, 2x 100% G8 (4+4)
8/16: DaVinci RP, PNE, 6mm EPE, 2xSVI, pT3b
2017: Lupron ADT, AMS800 AUS scheduled 5/17
IMRT SRT postponed til that heals, PSA's ~.03
Age 66, recently retired to Florida 'just in time'