Unfortunately, the fallacy remains that if the prostate is removed and the pathology report indicates negative margins, negative capsular penetration, lymph nodes and seminal vesicles, a patient can be considered "cured." As most of us know, although the percentages are favorable for non-recurrence with such a report, that’s not always the case, and there are anomalies. I asked my doctor last month what were the chances that any cancer was left behind and he told me that it’s "not likely given your pathology report, although the only thing you have going against you is your Gleason 7 and there are no guarantees." Not the answer I was looking for, but it’s something we all have to live with regardless of a favorable or unfavorable final pathology report. The only time I think about recurrence is when it comes time to have my PSA taken. Other than that, I don’t think about it much, and thank God for every day I have.
Diagnosed: March 25, 2007
Biopsy: Gleason 6. Five of twelve core samples positive with <5% each. No perineural invasion seen.
DaVinci Surgery: May 21, 2007 at Florida Hospital, Orlando, Florida. Surgery took one hour and 45 minutes. According to my surgeon, everything went textbook and the prostate peeled away nicely.
Post-op Pathology Report: Upgraded to Gleason 7 (3+4), negative margins, negative capsular penetration, negative seminal vesicles, lymph nodes left intact, multifocal perinural invasion, 15% of prosate involving cancer in both lobes.
Continence: Out of the pads at five weeks. Still have some very minor stress incontinence at times but it's not an issue. Still Kegel every day and will continue to do so.
Erections: Yes! With the assistance of Cialis.
1st Post-op PSA: <0.1 2nd Post-op PSA: <0.1
Family history: My Father had his prostate removed at age 67 in 1997 and has had a <0.1 PSA for the past 10 years. I was diagnosed at a much earlier age and had a more agressive cancer than my father. Go figure.