Just a quick update on a Friday afternoon…
Emotionally, doing quite well, although I still have the occasional fit of being pissed at this whole situation. Otherwise, pretty much back to my normal day-in, day-out routine.
I’ve also been doing a bit of reading on the concept of recurrence and treatments. Not obsessively, and not letting it add fuel to any emotional fire. Absorbing it in small doses with an open mind. If anyone has any compelling article, book, or other source on the topic, please feel free to share.
I received confirmation today that the next step in the process—the bone scan—is scheduled for 19 May 2016. I’m fine with that.
10 thoughts on “Day 1,990 – Quick Update”
What was your last PSA, if you don’t mind me asking? Cheers Sven
Hi Sven. It was 0.08 ng/ml, up from 0.04 in December. You can see a chart of my PSA trend in the sidebar of my home page.
Thanks. very interesting to follow your story. Your bone scan will come back negative, by the way. Which is a good thing, of course. I don’t want to interfere with your follow-up, but I thought it might cheer you up. Have a great weekend! Soon you will have a good chunk of the world’s urologists at your door step. AUA 2016 is in San Diego 🙂
Hi Sven. Thanks for the words of encouragement. I expect the same result with the bone scan—negative. The intent is to create a baseline reference point with it so we’ll have a more recent “before” image if we ever get to the point that that will be helpful.
I knew about the AUA meeting here next month, but thought it would be in bad taste to stand on the steps of the convention center asking for free medical advice or why the guidance on treatment is so conflicted or why they haven’t found a cure yet. 🙂 (Hmm.. Maybe on second though, perhaps I should—at least for the last two points.)
If you’ll be attending, let me know. At the very least, I can give you a few tips about our fair city.
Hi Dan. I was in San Diego 3 years ago at the AUA, now it’s my turn to hold the fort at home. Lovely city though and I’ll take you up on that offer next time I’l be around.
So glad to hear you’re feeling OK Dan. here’s a few articles I found useful (you may well have seen them already) If you haven’t as you suggest best sipped rather than knocked back over the rocks. Have a great weekend. S
Thanks, Simon. I had seen two of the three already a while back. Good to have a refresher, though.
Hi Dan. Just read through your blog from the beginning. Thank you for sharing your story.
One question I had was were you having regular prostate exams before your diagnosis? And if so, at what age did you start? I’ll be 46 this year and up until about a year ago, lived a rather unhealthy lifestyle (significant obesity, no exercise, bad diet, etc). I’ve made the necessary lifestyle changes to stay as healthy as I can and am on the fence as to whether or not I should ask my doctor to start my prostate exams early. Just curious what your opinion would be on this.
Also, you had mentioned in one of your posts that your urologist had offered to set you up with a vacuum pump and that you had refused. May I ask why? I would think that using a pump could have helped you restore more functionality faster than not using one.
Thanks for your comment. To answer your questions…
Back when I turned 40, the conventional wisdom was to begin PSA testing once you hit that magic number. But, being a typical doctor-avoiding guy, I’m guessing that my PSA was tested perhaps 3 times between the time that I turned 40 and when I was diagnosed at 52. So, no, there was no family history that caused me to be concerned, and there wasn’t an active plan to specifically monitor my PSA.
Again, I’m not a medical professional, so I won’t dispense specific advice as to whether you should be tested or not. Only you can make that decision.
I will say, however, that it’s one of those, “If you can’t stand the answer, don’t ask the question” situations. You have to be prepared for an answer that you may not like and, given the raging debate in the prostate cancer community right now about the value of PSA testing versus the costs of over-treatment, it’s going to get even more confusing. But only you can say what risks you’re willing to take, and which you’re not.
As far as the vacuum pump, you’re probably right. It may have sped things up, but it was simply a personal choice. Things continuously improved and I’m not in a relationship at the moment, so there wasn’t an urgent need to satisfy a partner.
Congrats, too, on the lifestyle changes. Those will only pay dividends in the long run. (I’m closing in on 90 lbs. lost since December 2014 and feel a ton better for it!)
I hope that helps. —Dan
Thank you. Congrats to you as well. I very well know how hard it is to make changes that stick. It took me a long time to want to change permanently. Very tough indeed.
I appreciate your comments regarding starting testing. I’m leaning toward going ahead and having it done this year. I am one that would rather know the bad news and deal with it than wait and maybe have a harder time recovering from it or not even surviving it at all.