Mika's journey

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mvesr
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 823
   Posted 6/5/2007 4:16 PM (GMT -7)   
Met and talked with Bluebird and Buddy at the Y.  She suggested I start a new topic. So here it is.  I have been getting regular physicals for as long as I can remember.  Was getting them every couple of years due to a job requirement.  I retired from The North Carolina State Bureau Of Investigation in October of 2002.  In February of 2002 I had the opportunity to become the Chief Of Police in my home town of Marion NC.  In January of 2006 (my last physical), my doctor said my psa was high (6.3) so I came back in and had it checked again.  This time it is 4.3.  My personal Dr. wanted to know if I wanted to be referred to a urologist and I told him yes.  I have had several friends die of cancer, but not prostate.  So I was referred to a urologist and he suggested a biopsy.  No Dr. has ever felt anything wrong with my prostate.  The biopsy was not a painful thing just uncomfortable.  I took about a month for the blood was not visiable in my secretions.  Dr. didn't say anything about that.  I got the bad news on January 29.  I spent the next two weeks in a fog.  Could not sleep, eat or think about anything else.  I had also put my future on hold.  I felt like I didn't have a future with this disease. After the two week period, I had an experience that brought a calming over my entire existance which has lasted until today and feel like it will last forever  This is not to say I don't have my moments.  The shower is a good place to cry, so your wife will not hear you.  I started gathering information about this disease.  After meeting with my urologist to get the bad news, I made my decision to seek a second opinion about potential treatments.  A good friend of mine had robotic surgery by Dr. Albala at Duke University Hospital last fall and suggested I look into also.  I made an appoitment with Dr. Albala in March.  While meeting with Dr. Albala I mentioned that I had sleep apnea.  After hearing that, Dr. Albala did not feel I was not a good candidate for the robotic surgery, so he referred me to another Duke surgeon.  She did  perineal surgery and she did not feel I would  do well that type of surgery either, so she got me an appointment with Dr. Moul who is the Chief of Urology at Duke.  I met with him in March for a seocnd opinion. and while talking with him he said I had a 20% chance of not being able to complete the surgery because of my weight and size.  He suggested I lose 40-45 pounds before the day of surgery.  I was really at a loss for what to do.  I returned home and sought the advise of a Hospital based powder weight loss program.  The Dr. in charge of that program would not Ok me losing that much weight for surgery and felt I would be too run down for the surgery.  So, I met with a nutritionist at the hospital who has helped me lose abot 50 pounds since my last physical in December.  After meeting with my family, I decided to have Dr. Moul do an open surgery on me to remove the prostate.  The original surgery date was for June 4th.  Dr. Moul call me the first of May with a cancellation for May 30th.  I took him up on it.
My family and I along with a good friend spent the 29th in a hotel across the street and walked over to the Hospital to check in at 6:30AM for a surgery time of 8:45PM.  It felt a little like the last walk for a condemmed prisoner.  But knew that God was walking with me and my family.  I was not afraid at all during the whole pre-op process.  I have had surgery before, but nothing this serious.  The doctors prepping me suggested they give me an epidural to better control my pain after surgery.  I reminded them I was not pregnant and we all got a big laugh at that.  So I had the epidural and it was my second best decision for this journey.  Dr. Moul told me that the surgery went well and feels like the cancer is contained in the prostate.  I was awake in the recovery room and had no problem staying awake through my hospital stay.  Thursday morning got up and was off my pain meds, walking around the ward for a quarter mile.  Had visitors from Raleigh later in the day and sitting up.  Can't say much about the hospital beds they are so un-comfortable.  Friday I visited the other 2 guys who Dr. Moul operated on Wednesday having a good visit with them, and walked a half mile that day around the ward.  Got out of the hospital friday afternoon, went back to the hotel to get ready for the 4 hour trip back home on Saturday.  I was really dreading the trip home because there are a lot of potholes in the interstate, but it was not really a problem.  I have had no pain meds since the hospital and have not needed the, either.  No bladder spasams.  The only problems I have had is the fact my lower abdomen is sore, not pain just sore.  Getting flat in the bed and getting up is a little difficult also.  I usually sleep on my right side and it is un-comfortable in that position.  Mr. Hang is a different story however.  The pulling hurts when getting up and down and I can't sit very long even with my cushion.  I have walked around the house and the Y a few minutes at a time and have been tired in the afternoon.  didn't take a nap today because the phone kept ringing.  I just have to talk with my friends and co-workers.  My son and his sife are expecting our first grand child in August and he is a boy. So in closing, I am going to try and not sit at home, but I am going to work on my next Amateur rating.  I live every day like it is my last and thank God every day I see that old sun come up.  People, none of us are more than a heart beat away from eternity.
 
May God keep and bless you.
 
Mika  

Cedar Chopper
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 432
   Posted 6/5/2007 4:25 PM (GMT -7)   

Mika,

"...and make His face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you!"

Excellent testimony.  Thanks.  ICTHUS

CCedar


~~*~~*~~*~~*~~*~~*~~*~~*~~*~~*
2 Years of PSA between 4 and 5.5
Biopsy 23DEC06 
Only 5 percent cancer in one of 8 samples.
Gleeson 3+3=6
Radical Prostatectomy 16FEB07 at age 54.
1+" tumor - touching inside edge of gland.
Confined:)
***************
Texas Hill Country
FRESH Produce Department Manager
Have you had your 5 colors today?


biker90
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1464
   Posted 6/5/2007 6:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey Mika,

Nice summary of you journey so far. I had open surgery in December 06 and had a lot of the same experience with the discomfort. It went away after a few days and I lost the catheter after 6 days. What a relief.

Keep us posted as you heal...

Jim
Age 72. Diagnosed 11/03/06. PSA 7.05. Stage T2B Gleason 3+3.
RRP 12/7/06. Nerves and nodes okay.
Pathological stage: T2B. Gleason 3+4. Cancer confined to prostate.
PSA on 1/3/07 - 0.04. 
PSA on 4/4/07 - 0.00  T level - 48  Restarted T therapy.
Next PSA on 7/18/07.
 
 "I have cancer but cancer does not have me."


myman
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 1219
   Posted 6/5/2007 6:35 PM (GMT -7)   
Mika,
Thanks so much for sharing your story with us. We just had our first grandchild 2 weeks ago tomorrow...get ready to fall in love!
Take good care of yourself you have so much to be here for.

Susan

That Bluebird is somethin' isn't she?! :-)
Husband Diagnosed 11/17/05 Age: 63 No Symptoms
PSA: 7.96, Positive DRE
Biopsy Right: 6 of 6 Cores Positive Biopsy Left: 1 of 6 Cores Positive
Gleason: 4+3 = 7 Stage: T2B N0 MX
2/09/06: LRP Restage: T3A NX MX
3 mo. PSA Post Surgery: 11.8, 12.9, 13.9 Bone scan, CT scan, Endorectal MRI, Chest XR - neg.
9/06/06: 6 mo. PSA: 18.8 CT shows distant lymph node involvement
Restage IV Start HT Lupron 3 mo. shots
12/06/06: PSA 0.8
03/07/07 - PSA 0.3
06/06/07 - Next PSA


bluebird
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 2542
   Posted 6/7/2007 12:30 PM (GMT -7)   

Each of us sharing “Our Journey” with others ~ allows Newbies to see so many different views … and to know that we all have the same goal.  To be cancer free… 

Reading Journeys reminds "All of Us" ~ that there are so many different stones in a path and seeing others traverse over stones we have not experienced ~ allows us to continue to learn.

 

It also brings us closer together ~ when we let them know “They Are Not Alone”….  Isn’t this a wonderful gift.

 

Sharing your weight loss and sleep apnea sheds another light on details that others will have issues with.  They will now learn from you.... 

 

:-)   Mica ~ Thank You for Caring Enough to Share!  yeah

 

In Friendship ~ Lee & Buddy

 


mvesr
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 823
   Posted 6/7/2007 7:16 PM (GMT -7)   
to all you wives that husbands are going through the days of wondering what the out look of the future will be gone .All you need to do is to look at him and give him a huge and kiss just that little bit of hope and encouragement will help both of you get over the next hump some times you will feel like giving up but just look up to god and he will give you strength to say and do the right thing because sometimes we are the back bone and then when that magic doctor come alone and takes out that bad part that is inside your husband then the relief is gone some now the healing process begans and i am just starting that part so when he gets down and sad through your love you are his caregiver just give him let him give your huges and kisses because your journey begains even more with him. dale

myman
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 1219
   Posted 6/7/2007 7:27 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you Dale - I'll do just as you said. I wish you well on your journey.

Susan

jetguy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 741
   Posted 6/8/2007 1:35 PM (GMT -7)   

Wow!  You sure had a struggle trying to get someone to work on you.  That must have been very discouraging.  Must have seemed like one road block after another.  I'm glad that it's over for you. It sounds that your actual surgery and recovery (to date) have gone very well.  I can't offer any advice 'cause I did radiation rather than surgery.  It seems that most of the guys struggle for awhile and end up doing very well.

Are you still going to get the Chief's job?  Or did you already get the job?  Grandson, huh?  My 8 month old grandson is sitting next to me as I write this.  He and his mom and dad live only a mile from us.  What fun!  I guarantee that you are going to be nuts about this kid.  And since our cancers are gone, we are going to get to see them grow up.  Nice.  Very nice.

Best of luck to you Mika and hang in there.

Regards,

Bill


Gleason 3+3=6, T1c, one core in twelve, another pre-cancerous.
62 years old and good health.  Married 37 years.  To same woman!
Began IGRT January 23, 2007. 


bluebird
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 2542
   Posted 6/9/2007 5:25 AM (GMT -7)   

:-)  Dear Dale,  (Good Morning to you to Mika!!!)

 

Thank you for your warm posting…  it touches a cord that makes me reflect back on at the beginning of  “Our Journey”.  Yes ~ hugs and kisses sending positive energy into our loved one is so important.  Our support is crucial… we are an essential part of this team (us/we) and pulling each other’s strength helps each of us to move forward onto the next stepping-stone. 

 

It is so important to know that the first few days the adrenaline sets in and everything looks good and feels so good!!!  And there’s no doubt that the decision was the right decision.  Then after a few days settle in… those dark clouds try to come in and cover the sunshine for many.  That’s where “we” as spouses have to be the strong center.  That’s where “we” as forum friends have to step up and share ~ letting others know that “they are not alone”. 

 

This forum is powerful in so many ways.  It allows “all of us” to lend support in many different ways.  Thank you for reaching out to us Dale… we are all here for each other.  yeah  

 

The “Veterans” on this forum are so important…. Helping to give guidance and reassurance.  We have all been were you both are today.  That’s why we reach out with Helping Hands to make your healing/recovery stepping-stone steady. 

 

Keep close ~ okay!!!!  And give Chief!!! A big warm fuzzy “HUG” from me and Buddy.  And when he returns the HUG ~ that one is for you from us…

                                    In Friendship …..

 

 

“God Bless You”

 

It's a little prayer  ~  "God Bless You"  ...but it means so much each day,

It means may angels guard you and guide you on your way.


mama bluebird - Lee & Buddy… from North Carolina

J  We invite you to visit our personal thread:  Click Here:  “Our Journey” ~ Sharing is Caring 

April 3, 2006  53 on surgery day

RRP / Radical Retropubic Prostatectomy with "wide excision"

PSA 4.6   Gleason  3+3=6    T2a   Confined to Prostate

2nd PSA 02-06-2007 Less than 0.1 Non-Detectable :)


mvesr
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 823
   Posted 6/9/2007 8:50 AM (GMT -7)   

Yes jetguy I have been the Chief here for four and a half years, been in this business for 33 and a half years but who is counting anyway!!  It seemed like it took forever to get things lined up but now it seems only a blur.  By the way our son passed his commercial check ride last saturday and we are so proud of him .  When his son comes in August they have done his nursery in an airplane theme.  It looks so cool.  Thanks again for all your support.  If you ever fly to Hickory NC (HKY), please be sure to see our son.  He is Mika Jr.

mvesr

 


gtmriviera
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 338
   Posted 6/9/2007 8:57 AM (GMT -7)   
15 years as a LEO was enough for me.  Anyone that can do what you have for 33 years can do anything.  We're with you guy.

mvesr
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 823
   Posted 6/9/2007 9:54 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi gtmriviera. Thanks for your insight on being a LEO for 15 years. I know that some time I am going to have to give it up. I can still do the work but staying qualified with my weapons is getting harder by the year. That prone position and bifocals are about to get the best of me. I still don;t know what I will do when that time comes. I have to be doing something for both my mental and physical well being. I get stir crazy at home. We like to travel but it takes money to travel. Getting Mr hang and the staples out next tuesday, and what good day that will be. If you can get your hands on a book by Kevin Gilmartin, it will give you some insight on Law Enforcement Officers, you will enjoy it being a former officer and all.

Take care:

mvesr

gtmriviera
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 338
   Posted 6/9/2007 10:29 AM (GMT -7)   
Being far-sighted, I just fired without my glasses and it was ok.  I had eye surgery about a year and a half ago and now the close up is much better but the far is not quite as good.  I've only tried shooting once recently and the eyes weren't too bad, but the parkinsons made it a lot of fun.

jetguy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 741
   Posted 6/9/2007 10:29 PM (GMT -7)   
Ok Mika, now we gotta' talk. I need to know what kind of an airplane your son took his checkride in and why he is doing it? Fun? Job? Need to know. I also know about years at work. I'm 63 and still flying and expect to continue. It's interesting that we do or don't want to keep doing what we do. It's also interesting that in our lines of work, some keep on and some don't. I have no idea which is the best. Anyway, tell me about your kid.

Regards,

Bill
Gleason 3+3=6, T1c, one core in twelve, another pre-cancerous.
62 years old and good health.  Married 37 years.  To same woman!
Began IGRT January 23, 2007. 


mvesr
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 823
   Posted 6/10/2007 8:05 AM (GMT -7)   

Jet guy.  Ou son got his first flying experience for his 16th birthday.  He was hooked after that.  He wanted to go to embry riddle university in florida but we just could not afford that.  He went to a community college near here that had a flying program.  We helped him all we could but he got discouraged after 911 when all the flying jobs dried up.  He has worked at the FBO in hickory a number of years and has been on his own since high school.  He got married a couple of years ago which slowed him down some and now he is expecting his first child in august.  His sights have always been set on flying for a living.  There are a lot of corporate flying at hickory and they fly a lot of nascar teams also at this airport.  The company he works for is solid and have purchased another company recently that will have more pilot opportunities for him.  He started out in a 152, but most of his instrument and commercial flying has been done in a 172RG. We are really proud of him and his sister who lives in new york city.  We are excited about his coming son and our first grandchild.

 

mvesr


naimnut
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 93
   Posted 6/10/2007 2:40 PM (GMT -7)   

Mika,

Interesting that, surgery-wise, we are on a very close schedule. I had DaVinci robotic on May 31, discharged from the hospital June 1. I was fortunate that mr hang was removed on June 4th.  The dribbling and incontinence afterwards was discouraging but things have been improving rapidly.

Your positive attitude comes right through your writing and it is clear that you'll come through this with excellent results.  Keep us posted about your progress.


Age, 53
PSA 3.76, Gleason 6, T1c, scans negative
psa doubling time 35 months
Da vinci robotic scheduled for Thursday, May 31


mvesr
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 823
   Posted 6/10/2007 4:04 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi naimnut.  This are good.  We went to a movie today and out to eat.  I was 54 when I discovered I had this, so we are close together in age and surgery date.  My Dr. requires his pts to have the cath for two weeks.  I can wait till next week.  I have been feeling good though but have overdone it a couple of times.  I feel so good that it is easy to overdo it.
 
Take care of yourself
 
mvesr

naimnut
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 93
   Posted 6/10/2007 8:59 PM (GMT -7)   
Mika,
 
By the  time I got my cath out I actually had gotten to where it was pretty easy to manage and not that uncomfortable.  You'll do fine having it in for 2 wks. I haven't heard of anyone else on the board here getting their cath out at four days, but my dr. was confident.
 
You're right about not overdoing.  I'm trying to slow down, on  my walking.  Five miles (spaced out over three seperate sessions) on Friday, 3 or so yesterday and about 2+ today.  I find it hard to remember the kegels and vow each day that I'll do a better job remembering the next day. 
 
Good luck with everything.  Do not be discouraged by any leaking when the cath is removed. It does not mean anything and will most likely improve rapidly within a few days.  I'm now down to about 4 pads/day and they're seldom truly soaked.
 
But I'm rambling, and its late.
 
Catch you later.
Age, 53
PSA 3.76, Gleason 6, T1c, scans negative
psa doubling time 35 months
Da vinci robotic scheduled for Thursday, May 31


mvesr
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 823
   Posted 6/12/2007 6:17 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi all.  Na-Na-Na, Na-Na, Na-Na-Na-Na, Hey-Hey-Hey-Good bye, to Mr. hang that is.   Today was the day.  It came out fine, was a different feeling.  24 staples also came out with no problem.  The wound looks good too with no bleeding.
 
Here is the short version of the pathology report.
Going in my psa was 6.3, came down to 4.3 before biopsy three weeks later. 
 
Gleason 3+4=7
 
After surgery pathology report:
 
Gleason 4+3=7
Had combination Gleason 3,4,5
Gland weight: 40 grams
Extent of invasion overall:15%
Extracapsular ectension: negative
Apical margin: negative
Peripheral margins:
Left: negative
Right: Microfocally equivocal, probably negative
Bladder neck margin: Negative
Perinural invasion: positive
Vascular invasion: negative
 
I am going back for my next psa in September.  I just know that it will be good news.  I was soaking wet before I left the building.  I used one pad on the 4 hour trip back home, and on my second one of the day right now.  It was a different feeling to go to the bathroom and it feels different, now that I have to remember to go to the bathroom. 
 
Thanks to everyone who has helped me get through this and I know you will all be there for the other hurtles I have to cross also.
 
God bless you and keep you. Till next time
 
Mika-mvesr

biker90
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1464
   Posted 6/12/2007 6:21 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Mika,

Congrats on losing the catheter. What a relief!

It will take a while for things to settle in place and the nerves to start functioning again. You are right, it does feel different because it is very different and it takes time to learn what the new signals are telling you. As you heal, the feelings down there will start making more sense and you will be able to control what is happening.

Best of luck and take it easy while you heal...

Jim
Age 72. Diagnosed 11/03/06. PSA 7.05. Stage T2B Gleason 3+3.
RRP 12/7/06. Nerves and nodes okay.
Pathological stage: T2B. Gleason 3+4. Cancer confined to prostate.
PSA on 1/3/07 - 0.04. 
PSA on 4/4/07 - 0.00  T level - 48  Restarted T therapy.
Next PSA on 7/18/07.
 
 "I have cancer but cancer does not have me."


survivor_wannabee
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 6/13/2007 5:34 AM (GMT -7)   
Congratulations Mika. I am a week and a half out from catheter removal and was pretty depressed that same day that I felt almost totally incontinent. Things got better though pretty quickly and I am making steady progress. You already seem to have a pretty good attitude, but I thought I'd just pop you with some encouragement as everyone here did for me. I find though that it is much easier to tell someone else to be patient vs. practicing what you preach. Good luck with your recovery.
Age: 57
Diagnosed: 3/27/2007
PSA: 4.9
Gleason: 3 + 4
Cancer in 6 out of 12 samples
DRE: Positive
Stage: T2B
RALP Performed: 5/29/07
Partial nerve sparing one side, full on other
Prostate not enlarged, margins visually look good
Hospital stay: about 24 hours
Catheter Out: 6/8/07


bluebird
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 2542
   Posted 6/16/2007 6:23 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi ~ Mika,

We were singing right along with you!!!  Na-Na-Na, Hey-Hey… tongue

You are doing Great!!! Main thing…. Keep kegeling and stairs …..

Continue forward ~ and with the positive attitude you have ~ it will continue to be a smooth path.

We keep you close in thoughts and prayers.  Sending special hugs to you, Dale, & Kay!

In Friendship ~ Lee & Buddy 

 

«  bluebird ~  Moderator for Prostate Cancer Forum


mvesr
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 823
   Posted 6/16/2007 3:50 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Lee and Buddy. Sorry we haven't seen you guys in the last few days. We have been getting ready for a baby shower for our daughter in law and getting the field ready for our July 4th car show. See you soon.

Mika and Dale

mvesr
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 823
   Posted 6/22/2007 6:18 PM (GMT -7)   

Well Guys, I did it again.  I have been feeling so good lately that I walked too fast at the Y yesterday and was constipated last night.  I had a bad headache and upset stomach yesterday and came home and took a nap. When I got up this morning there were a few dribbles of blood in my urine.  I had a little more the next couple of trips to the bathroom.  It was clear the rest of the day until this evening, when the blood came back.  Didn't do much today napped and watched TV.  It is really hard for me to not do too much because I feel so good.  But after talking with Buddy this morning he made me realize I really have to watch what I do.  I have been doing Kegels during this time and have stopped that today.  I know what I have done but if anyone has any other suggestions let me know. 

 

Mika-mvesr 


bluebird
Veteran Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 2542
   Posted 6/24/2007 7:45 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi ~ Mika & Dale,

 

Hope you've seen an improvement with taking a little down time to re-coup.

You best rest up for that car show…

Check out Bob57's thread: Home after surgery with a few questions 

He's having a few of the same issues.... 

Keeping you both close in thoughts and prayers.

In Friendship ~ Lee & Buddy

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