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.