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Dads been diagnosed this week

Posted 05 Jul 2021 at 08:20

Hi came across this over the weekend my dad was taken in last week after having his bloods taken 

it has been confirmed he has prostate cancer and it’s spread to his left hip the worrying thing is his psa levels are 3200 and looking over previous threads that seems very high 

if I’m honest I don’t know what questions to ask the doctors or him or best way of supporting him without breaking down 

Posted 05 Jul 2021 at 08:46
You don't say why he was taken in? It's not unusual for men to be unaware they have prostate cancer even with raised PSA like your dad.

If he has zero PC symptoms with treatment he could have many years of good life left in him with treatment.

If the reason for admission was PC then it is more dependant on where the cancer has gone but he should still respond well to treatment.

Posted 05 Jul 2021 at 08:54

Hi apologies for the lack of info 

he was taken in last wed after severe weight loss and pain in his left hip and having his bloods done at his new gps.
we had to move him doctors where his previous doctor had diagnosed sever arthritis he is struggling to eat and swallow I think he is worst than first thought he’s gone from 11st to 7 in 2 months I am prepared for the worst but we are waiting on other tests etc I just wanted to know the right questions to ask etc as my head is spinning 

Posted 05 Jul 2021 at 10:17

Hi James, sorry to hear the news. Yes 3200 is high, as you no doubt know anything above 4 is worth investigating, as a general rule anything above 100 implies it has spread to other areas of the body (not an absolute rule, a PSA of 80 has been reported on this site and there was no cancer anywhere). So 3200 means it has spread and may be in places beyond just the hip.

You will hear doctors using the word "Advanced" which means it has spread beyond the prostate, you will also hear the word "Metastasis" which is just another word for advanced, but can be used to describe an area of the body to where it has spread, the word is often abbreviated to "Mets", so a doctor may say "He has 'mets' in his hip". 

The first thing to try and establish is whether the mets are only in the bones or are in other organs (liver, lungs, brain), this is called spread to soft tissue, as opposed to bones, which I guess are hard tissue. The fact he has lost a lot of weight, implies there is something quite poorly with him so I suspect it has spread to soft tissue, unless it is pure coincidence and he has some other problem as well.

Treatment of the prostate by surgery or radio therapy is now pointless as the cancer has spread to other parts of the body. So any treatment needs to treat the whole body, these are called systemic treatments. The most likely on to try first is Hormone Therapy (abbreviated to HT). Chemo therapy is another possibility.

The only good news is that in the short term he may respond well to HT. This will effectively put the cancer cells to sleep, so he won't get any worse and may recover to some extent. HT nearly always works straight away, but almost always stops working after either as little as six months or as much as five years (even fifteen years has been known). Once HT stops then Chemo can me tried.

How old is your dad? HT is not too troublesome and though it has side effects they are not as bad as what he is going through at the moment.

So I think I would ask to which parts of his body has it spread? Will they do any tests to try and establish those places, if they do not already know? Will they try HT or any other treatment? 

There are plenty of other members here who may have other suggestions. 



Posted 05 Jul 2021 at 10:21

Wow thank you so much for the response mate answered a lot and I first thought it’s much worse 

my dads 72 k think he has ignored the problem for a while as people of that age of generation tend to do 
Im going to use the questions you have said today and hopefully get some answers 

thanks again 

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