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User
Posted 17 Mar 2017 at 22:51
Hi all

New to this sort of thing so apologies in advance if it sounds forced or anything..

It's been quite a few months! I promised my wife just before the new year I would go for a full check up. The doctors kept sending me texts nagging me to do it but I'd been so busy I hadn't had the chance. The results came back and were generally good but the PSA reading was again a little too high. So the doctor wanted me to do an exam at the hospital.

The first was a physical exam and was arranged just a week after the doctor visit. After the exam they said they wanted me to do a biopsy and I agreed. The following week I had it done and again a mere week later was at the hospital to discuss the results. Yep, I had prostate cancer.

I was at a loss initially, the "C" word can do that to you. Also I was due to fly out a few days later to Canada to commission the project I had spent the last year working on. I really wanted to go but was confused about what to do. So I contacted the hospital and they were amazing. I spoke to a consultant and he assured me it would be better to go, take my mind of it and focus on something else for a while. He said they would arrange a MRI scan as soon as I got back. I arrived back last Saturday and they had arranged the scan for the following day (Sunday!)

Then just three days later I had the scan results. The cancer was contained in the prostate, the best news. I have a holiday booked in three weeks time and again the consultant recommended that I take it. So the date has been arranged for the 28th of April to have the damned gland removed from my body, and good riddance to it! But I have to confess to a little trepidation, this will be the first major surgery in my 54 years on this earth. I am trying every distraction technique known to stop myself thinking of it.

I can't finish without thanking my local health service, a much maligned outfit normally. I have private medical insurance but never thought to use it given the speedy nature of the NHS.

If you got this far thanks for reading, sorry for the wall of text.

Cheers - Gary

User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 06:53

Hi Gary
Click on my picture and read my profile if you wish. It's good that you have made your mind up and feel strong about ridding the cancer. However do read the publications on surgery and side effects and erectile dysfunction etc basically so you are very well informed on what will happen and what may need to be done after surgery.
All the best wishes from me and enjoy your holiday

If life gives you lemons , then make lemonade

User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 09:41

Yep read my profile also. My recommendation would be to have lots of sun sea and sex while you are away. You need to be aware of potential side effects.
Obviously you are in the road to the operation. But out of curiosity were other treatments discussed with you

All the best

Bri

User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 12:16

Interesting that 3 of the 4 men that have replied to you are like my husband - they had the op in the hope / expectation that it would get rid of the cancer but it failed and they gave ended up needing further treatment. It is important to understand that surgeons can be a tad over-optimistic both about the success of RP and the potential long term and life changing side effects. It is good that you have made a decision but don't let that stop you from finding out about other possible routes.

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

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User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 03:31

Hi Gary,

Sorry you have confirmed PCa but if it is contained there is a good chance that the cancer will all go with the Prostate. Good that it was found early.

Do let us know how the op goes and the type of surgery. Also, if you ascertain the full details of your diagnosis, that can prove helpful if you post this under your profile as at some point it may be helpful to who respond to your posts.

Barry
User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 06:42
Gary

I'm a little younger than you and recently had my prostate removed. Are you fully aware of the side effects of the surgery? Will it be nerve sparing? If yes, this will help with erectile dysfunction. Did they discuss any alternatives?

To get the best advice from forum members it would be good to know your TNM and Gleason scores.

I had to cancel a trip to Italy as my urologist advised immediate surgery. Your urologist would not advise you take your trip if there were any risk so go and enjoy yourself.

The surgery wasn't as bad as I thought it would be - I had the Da Vinci robotic procedure. The catheter I found painful though.

You're in the right place for support. People here are great and the specialist nurses are very good if you ever need to give them a call.

Ulsterman

User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 06:53

Hi Gary
Click on my picture and read my profile if you wish. It's good that you have made your mind up and feel strong about ridding the cancer. However do read the publications on surgery and side effects and erectile dysfunction etc basically so you are very well informed on what will happen and what may need to be done after surgery.
All the best wishes from me and enjoy your holiday

If life gives you lemons , then make lemonade

User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 09:41

Yep read my profile also. My recommendation would be to have lots of sun sea and sex while you are away. You need to be aware of potential side effects.
Obviously you are in the road to the operation. But out of curiosity were other treatments discussed with you

All the best

Bri

User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 12:16

Interesting that 3 of the 4 men that have replied to you are like my husband - they had the op in the hope / expectation that it would get rid of the cancer but it failed and they gave ended up needing further treatment. It is important to understand that surgeons can be a tad over-optimistic both about the success of RP and the potential long term and life changing side effects. It is good that you have made a decision but don't let that stop you from finding out about other possible routes.

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 14:52

If Surgery is your chosen option or no choice option I would advise that you identify the surgical procedure option which has the best proven results for 'nerve sparing' and that you identify a surgeon who has the best proven track record of nerve sparing. They will use terms like "everybody's different" and "most people get use back within...blah, blah blah"

Also I would try to get the surgeon to agree to attempt to not cut out the internal (bladder) sphincter or at least explain why that cannot be avoided.

I am sure the surgeon's first priority is to make sure he cuts out anything that has any chance of being cancerous and in that regard it's easier for the surgeon to cut out more than less. You need to identify a surgeon who has the skill to cut out what needs cutting out and not cut out stuff that doesn't need cutting out.

User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 18:32

Michael,

If only it was that straight forward!! One of our members reported some time ago that he had a severe after effect following surgery. If memory serves me correctly, he suffered permanent urinary incontinence, probably of even greater significance than ED, yet he was treated by one of the half dozen or so surgeons voted by the profession as the top surgeons in the UK for PCa. There is also the fact that some surgeons will cherry pick the cases they feel will give them the best results and thereby enhance their reputations. Other surgeons who may be just as skilled or in some cases even more so, may take more difficult cases and because this may have a lower success rate ostensibly may appear to be less skilled. How would you rate a surgeon that had a reputation for greater nerve sparing but with greater need for subsequent salvage treatment compared with one who removed slightly more to give a better chance of success which was reflected in his/her results? Everybody is different in the challenge they pose a surgeon and the full extent is not always realised until the operation is underway and even then it's often difficult to forecast results. Indeed, apart from the skill of the surgeon, success post op may to some extent be partly due to how an individual's body responds and also post operative steps the patient takes to improve his situation. So it's not surprising that surgeons tend to generalise and be non committal. To expect otherwise is naive.

I am sure that in general surgeons only remove what they feel is prudent to do so.

Where and how specifically would you suggest Gary goes about finding the surgeon you envisage?

PS.  The man concerned was 'Capitalman' Here is one of his posts.  Posted: 27 September 2013 14:52:38
John
agree with Douglas on one point - less of a hospital stay.
I had robotic surgery exactly 4 years ago, with one of the top (allegedly) surgeons in the country. Still incontinent and still have ED, I might as well have picked a surgeon's name out of a hat!
Wishing you better luck than I had
Simon

Edited by member 18 Mar 2017 at 18:51  | Reason: Not specified

Barry
User
Posted 18 Mar 2017 at 19:21

Yes, I often think of Capitalman. The terrible thing about that case was that although he had one of the Golden 5 (as named 7 celebrated in the press) as soon as it was realised that his op had gone terribly wrong, the consultant would have nothing to do with him. No follow up, no support, no aftercare - it was a shocking case. Our uro referred to Capitalman's uro as being too busy believing his own media hype!

Edited to say I am really sorry Gary, this isn't really helping you, is it?

Edited by member 18 Mar 2017 at 20:25  | Reason: Not specified

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." Soren Kierkegaard

 
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