Prostate cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in men. If detected early, the chances of successful treatment are much higher. Regular examinations and screenings are are necessary for early detection.
Read the story of N, who shared his prostate cancer experience with us.
“I will start with my AAA repair nearly 10 years ago! How time seems to run through our fingers – dangerously sometimes! I want to start here because I felt that my body at the age of 60, took a huge blow.
For those who do not know, a AAA repair is an Abdominal Aorta Aneurysm, when the Aorta expands and form a bubble which may rupture at any time. Firstly to survive that, having had less than a 50% chance of survival, is a blessing, (Feel free to Google the procedure, you will understand). Secondly, it is estimated that 75% of men is erectile dysfunctional afterwards! I was blessed. It took a long time to recover and I was not as strong as before, but with patience and effort it worked.
My thyroid and gallbladder followed soon after, within 18 months. I felt like my body took a huge blow, which it of course did. My GP, we lived in Gauteng at that time, always insisted that I check my prostate at least once a year. Yes, the Dreaded Finger Test. I found it best to grin and bear it.
At this stage we retired to Hermanus, and for about two and a half years I did not have my prostate checked. I did not think this was necessary, because I was fine and the last time my GP in Gauteng checked it, it was OK!
Then, just over four years ago now, I had a funny feeling something was not right in my body. I was going to the toilet more often, only urinating a little bit at a time, and sometimes I had to push hard. I also had leaks in my underpants.
I just knew I had to see my doctor, and yes, it was confirmed with a PSA blood test!
Prostate Cancer. Shock. Dismay! How did this happen? I was only 66! Too young and all was two and a half years ago when I last got checked out.
The urologist had a long discussion with me. He explained that my prostate was 90% affected, but the good news was that it seemed it had not yet spread beyond the prostate. A small cancerous growth was also discovered in my bladder, and removed.
I avoid using technical terms and give it in plain language.
I underwent a Radical Prostatectomy, and yes I am alive, but I paid the price for my own arrogance. I am now Erectile dysfunctional. I have tried everything – Viagra, Cialis and injections. Nothing works.
I am now 70 years old, and that was 4 years ago. I am young of mind and spirit, and it hurts.
The entire ordeal taught me yet another life lesson, I might be dysfunctional, but I am blessed to have a wonderful partner who understands, and we have found ways of satisfying each other. Yes it is possible, not the same as penetrating sex, but still satisfying.
My advice to any man is: have yourself checked from a young age! If I had myself checked earlier, the cancer would have been treated sooner.
You can read our previous blogs on prostate cancer here.
Facts about Prostate Cancer Part i