Lies and Deceptions
I am not sure how many on this site feel like I do, but I feel that prostate cancer has been so down played in our society that we shrug off a rise in PSA. No big deal. Most guys don’t know it can kill you. Most guys don’t know how it changes your life even if it does not kill you.
Thought I would just repeat the
opening lines of the OP, as I suspect... no, I'm fairly certain, that if societal views of prostate cancer were different, than for many if not most of us here (and most of us are here because our journey has been especially difficult) things would have gone much differently.
If we saw frequent commercials to get an exam... not just a few in November. If our friends and family urged us to get regular tests. And if our doctors put some significance to a rising PSA, not just casually mentioning that you should see a urologist, then it would likely instill in us a sense of urgency in the matter. And urologists in particular, if they were to tell us that yes, this can kill you, rather than just saying come back in six months, then we might grasp the potential severity of the disease.
Oddly enough, it was forty years ago, when I faced my first major surgery, a hernia repair, it was a urologist who told me to not let guilt
consume me. Guilt will tear you up, he told me. He has long passed away. But in my PCa journey, I find myself going thru stages
of grieving... I'm not sure how closely this follows the Kubler-Ross model, but I blame myself (guilt) as much if not more than I blame the urologist who brushed off my PSA. If I had anything to do over in my life, I would go back five years and after that negative biopsy
I would have dropped him immediately and found someone else.
But on the other hand, having gone thru the PCa debacle in a way prepared my for things to come. Other cancers and other possible cancers. And now I take each one very seriously
indeed. Sometimes things happen for a reason. I have been both blessed and cursed. Yes, things certainly could have gone much more smoothly,
but they also could have gone much worse. I am fortunate that my PCa was caught before it had spread any further. The downside is that I am far from the man that I was back in 2012. We live and learn.
2014-15: PSA's 9, 12, 20, 25, Neg DRE's, false neg TRUS biopsy
6/16: New Uro, MRI Fusion biopsy, 6+Gr4 Rt Base (2x40%+2x100) G8(4+4)
8/16: DaVinci RP, 3 foci EPE, PNI, 11 LN-, 53g, 25%, BL SVI, pT3b
1/17: Began Lupron ADT, PSA's ~.03
5/17: AMS800 implant, revised 6/17
8/17: 39 tx RapidArc IMRT (70 Gy)
1/18, 4/18, 7/18, 1/19: PSA's <0.008, T=9
2018: Dx Radiation Colitis & other weird stuff