It is helpful to hear about
other's side affects for various treatments, but you must understand that the side affects for ALL treatments follow a normal bell shaped curve. There will abe a few patients 1%-10% that encounter severe long term side affects and 1%-10% who suffer minor or only short term side affects. It's impossible to know where you will end up on that curve. If you are healthy then the chances of ending up on the far end with few side affects is much better. If you have problems now expect those problems to worsen.
I have struggled with this issue for months and finally came to the conclusions that if I could not accept the worse side affects from a treatment then I would choose something else. Also various treatments have time effects in that side effects either appear early or late but may end up in the same place 3 or 4 years down the road. For me I would rather delay the effects and go with the treatment that has delayed effects.
Every individual may have different preferences as to what is important to them personally, so it is important to understand what your preferences are.
64 years old.
I had an initial PSA test in 1999 of 4.4. PSA increased every 6 months reaching 40 in 5-08. PSA free ranged from 16% to 10%. Over this time period I had a total of 13 biopsies and an endorectal MRIS all negative and have seen doctors at Long Beach, UCLA, UCSF and UCI. DX has always been BPH and continue to get biopsies every year.
In 10-08 I had a 25 core biopsy that showed 2 cores positive, gleason 6 at less than 5%. Surgery was recommended and I was in the process of interviewing surgeons when my wife's oncologist recommended I get a 2nd opinion from a prostate oncologist.
I saw Dr Sholtz, in Marina Del Rey, and he said that the path reports indicated no tumor, but indolant cancer clusters that didn't need any treatment. He was concerned that my PSA history indicated that I had a large amount of PC somewhere that had yet to be uncovered and put me through several more tests.
A color doppler targeted biopsy in 11-08 found a large tumor in the transition zone, gleason 6 and 7. Because of my high PSA Dr. suspected lymph node involvement, 30% chance, and sent me to Holland for a Combidex MRI, even though bone and CT scans were clear.
Combidex MRI showed clear lymph nodes and a 2,5 cm tumor in the anterior. I was his 1st patient to come up clear on the Combidex which has a 96% accuracy,
I've been on a no meat and dairy diet since 12-08 and PSA reduce to 30 while I awaited the Combidex MRI.
The location of the tumor in the anterior apex next to the urethea makes a good surgical margin very unlikely. Currently on Casodex and Proscar for 8 weeks to shrink my 60 mm prostate. Treatment will be seeds followed by 5 weeks of IMRT while continuing on Casodex and Proscar. So far no side affects from the Casodex.
As of April 10 and 7 weeks on Casodex and Proscar PSA has gone from 30 to 0.62 and protate from 60mm to 32mm. Very minor side affects. Doc says all this indicates tumor is not aggessive
Awaiting schedule for seed impants