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Posted 12 Sep 2017 at 07:43

I find this very hard to share as i always promised my husband that he would die at home.

He was lying beside me in bed, an old motorcycle racer who had many hard knocks, saying 'I feel like I've got broken ribs'

And I knew if anyone knew what broken ribs felt like, he did! If we still had all the bikes he totalled I would not have to work!

So I said if you have not had any falls or crashes lately, go see your doctor.

'why?' 'because the only other reason you have broken ribs is cancer'


'Oh thanks very much. There was me looking for you to help me sleep'

Then he admitted to tingling fingers as well as back pain and with a family history( his dad died of a sudden heart attack) although he had never smoked in his life, we went through a full heart survey. ECG, Xray, bloods, all came up ok except the heart under a little stress. As he worked in a very physical job we accepted that. Back Xrays ok. So more painkillers.

End of week, painkillers no use. Still lying awake beside me inpain and unable to sleep. And I will never forgive myself for going to the spare room. Never leave your man. Snoring or not!

So by Thurs our junior doc was on leave and he saw the boss who said 'lets take an xray from the side' , 'and an extra bs while we're at it.

He knew what he was looking at. Stabbing back pain, tingling fingers = collapsed vertebrae for a pathological reason.

56yr old male who has had regular bum checks? Last one three weeks ago?

This is the most shocking PSA level I think our doc had seen without having a serious prostate proplem. His prostate was described as 'firm,but not lumpy' and nothing to worry about.

PSA 3979.

For those of you who know about these things, bleepers.

So my beloved hubby had 2 collapsed vertebrae, broken ribs, pelvic involvement but NO prostate symptoms.

His doctors initiated treatment IMMEDIATELY and i cannot fault them enough.

We had a fantastic last year together including a trip he had promised me for all the 14 years we were married.

But unfortunately he had a particularly aggressive type of prostate cancer that did not respond to any treatment.


However i feel if it had been screened for in the way women's cancers are, and all men aged 50 actually KNEW they were allowed this free blood test,it would have been picked up sooner. And all the science is infavour of early diagnosis.


PROSTATE CANCER WILL AFFECT ONE IN TWO MEN if you dont die of something else first.



Posted 12 Sep 2017 at 19:27

That is a very sad situation to find yourself in; however, the debate about screening is complex and evokes strong reactions on both sides. It is also very unlikely ever to happen in England. Educating men and GPs is essential until and unless a more reliable diagnostic test than PSA and DRE is developed.

Re your last comment, it is actually much more common than that. 60% of men in their 60s and 80% of men in their 80s have some prostate cancer although for many this will never cause them any problems.

Finally, if the profile name is your real name, it may be a good idea to change it or ask the moderators to do it for you. We sometimes get spammers and scammers on here and your real name plus the information that you have been widowed may make you vulnerable to identity fraud or worse.

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

Posted 12 Sep 2017 at 21:14

I read your post with great sadness Karen and can only hope that your happier memories will help get you through.

With my very best wishes



We can't control the winds - but we can adjust our sails
Posted 13 Sep 2017 at 10:24

So sorry to read your post, Karen. I lost my husband to advanced, late diagnosed prostate cancer over seven years ago so I understand the journey you are on.

I hope you can accept you did all you could for your husband. I used to beat myself up that I hadn't been able to save Mike, but eventually forgave myself that if 'the system' couldn't save him how on earth could I. It now seems to make sense of all I learned quickly to try to raise awareness and funds for research and better diagnostic tests.

I don't know how long ago your loss was but it is important to take care of yourself. Losing your husband leaves you physically and emotionally drained and it takes time to learn to adapt to our new life.

Take care, Janet, x

Posted 13 Sep 2017 at 16:33

So sorry to hear your story Karen and my condolences for your loss.

On the subject of PSA screening it is interesting to see an upgrade in the USA from cat D to cat C

See below


I will certainly be recommending my son is screened and I do think it will come when the treatment protocols are improved then screening surely becomes a must have.

Debate is important in this area in my opinion so thank you for sharing your experience and thoughts.

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