Hello Deeann, I am a stage 3 locally advanced patient - spread to the vesicles - who had hormone therapy and radiotherapy.
For me, the hormone therapy was very hard going. Starting at the beginning, I was dizzy and felt nauseous a lot. That settled down after a couple of weeks. Then there was the fatigue caused by being unable to sleep through the night. Hot flushes and sometimes sweats lasting up to an hour were uncomfortable and also woke me up, usually around 4-5am. The hair on my body stopped growing and thinned down considerably. Then I had pains in my knees which moved down to my ankles over a period of around 6 weeks. Then I developed pins and needles in my wrists and hands which I still have some 3 years after starting treatment. I used to get up around 3 times a night so all these effects were very tiring. I also developed very tender nipples which resulted in radiotherapy to the breast bud but that did not really work. The worst aspect from my wife's point of view was the depression. I was clinically depressed for a time about 12 months after starting treatment. This meant big mood changes and suicidal thoughts plus vivid memories of a very unhappy childhood. Not a good time.
Radiotherapy is completely painless and takes only a minute or two. I had 37 visits which meant going to the hospital every week day for 7 weeks. I also had to self administer an enema before each zapping to ensure the bowel was empty. I ended up with a very sore bum which itself needed treatment. There was a total and complete loss of all sexual function and thoughts. I continued to work as a mobile mechanic throughout the treatment despite the moods and tiredness.
As a result of my troubles with the drug, my planned 3 years was reduced to 2 years and currently I am on 'holiday' until my PSA rises once again to show the cancer is back. One side effect that I did not know was a reduction in penis length by almost 3 inches. No one mentioned this beforehand. I was seen by my GP regarding the depression but I found it hopeless and also after radiotherapy, getting up in the night sometimes up to 6 times, he prescribed a drug to help me relax but that too did not work.
Currently off the drug for 12 months. It took 6 months to notice any changes, the first being my hair started to grow again. Then sexual awakening but unable to achieve anything until the 9 month mark. There is no ejaculation and is termed dry which is a strange sensation.
The very high PSA is indicating the cancer has spread and had he not had the test done would likely have become a stage 4 - spread to other organs or lymph nodes or bones - and his options for successful treatment start to diminish. His options must be discussed with the experts to give him the best chance of survival. Very difficult I know, but essential all the same. And remember, we are all different and some will tell you they hardly suffered at all. Hope this is of some help.
Edited by member 27 Oct 2018 at 19:25
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