Some men find it very difficult to have family members involved in the conversations & appointments, especially female relatives. The side effects of treatment can be extremely distressing and embarrassing. Of course, he may only be this rigid because it is so new to him - hopefully as he gets his head round it all, he will be happier for someone to accompany him to the appointments.
Google is not our friend in these situations - but don't feel that you can't talk to anyone. The nurses at PCUK are brilliant - the number is at the top of the page here and they are very used to speaking to daughters, sons, friends, partners, etc.
Just as a starter - and perhaps to give you a bit of reassurance - here is a basic summary of PCa.
- The cancer feeds on testosterone
- if it is still within the prostate gland it is often curable but once it spreads somewhere else, it can only be controlled
- there are two types of hormone treatment - a) stops the body from producing testosterone and b) disguises the testosterone so the cancer can't recognise it
- either way, the idea is that the cancer starves
- stopping the production of testosterone is basically chemical castration so you can imagine that the side effects and emotions are very hard for some men to deal with
- later in the disease, some cancer learns to survive without testosterone so then other treatments have to be added
- despite popular opinion, chemo does not cure many cancers on its own - it usually has to be combined with something else. Chemo does not cure PCa so in the past it was only used for men at the end stage of their disease, to make them more comfortable. Recent research has shown that chemo can actually make the HT work for longer but it is still very new and not all hospitals offer it. Nor are all men suitable for it.
My guess is that your dad is having the a) type of HT although he may also have had a bit of b) to begin with to prevent tumour flare. Tumour flare happens when a new treatment starts and the cancer gets very busy trying to fight against the treatment.
The doctors will monitor how well the treatment is working by checking his PSA level regularly, and they may also test his testosterone level to make sure that he hasn't got any. Occasionally, they may also repeat the scans to see what's happening, especially if the PSA is rising instead of going down.