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This member is a YANA Mentor This is his Country or State Flag

Ian Vagg and Pam live in Queensland, Australia. He was 61 when he was diagnosed in August, 2005. His initial PSA was 24.00 ng/ml, his Gleason Score was 8, and he was staged T4M. His choice of treatment was ADT-Androgen Deprivation (Hormone). Here is his story.

I was not watching my PSA despite some warning signs as I was keeping an eye on my heart and blood pressure.

I was having irregular PSA tests and two years ago my PSA was 3.6 ng/ml although it had been rising.

I experienced some leg pain around six months ago and believed it was caused by playing more golf and tennis than normal. The pain would go away with rest and/or physiotherapy.

About three months ago the leg pain got worse and after consulting my GP he prescribed Voltaren and sent me to a bone specialist. He thought I might need a hip replacement but after an X-ray said no. He arranged an MRI scan. Unfortunately this showed a small bone tumour in the hip area. Further tests showed an enlarged prostate and a biopsy showed that the tumour was prostate related. My PSA was 24.0 ng/ml.

After consulting a number of specialists the Urologist explained only option would be Hormone therapy . He arranged an injection of Eligard (a new drug)together with cyprostat acetate to stop the flare. After four weeks my PSA dropped to 1.7 ng/ml and he took me off the cyprostat tablets.

My side effects have been quite minimal. No hot flushes and some tiredness. I am having acupuncture and taking some supplements as well as changing my diet. My libido has dropped but still functioning.

I work as a tax accountant in my own business and am in the process of significantly reducing my workload so I can concentrate on my health.

Have consulted with a number of mentors and realise the medical profession can only do so much and it will be up to me to handle this situation. Fortunately my wife has a number of contacts in the complimentary health field and that is proving to be useful.

We are planning to spend 10 days over Xmas in a Tao Buddhist health resort in Thailand and believe this will be a positive experience.

My next PSA test is just before Xmas and expecting my PSA to continue dropping. Hopefully to below 1.0 ng/ml.

My bone pain has disappeared at this stage.

Interested in talking to mentors in a similar situation especially with an emphasis on alternative and complementary treatment options.

UPDATED

January 2006

I had a PSA test just before Xmas 2005 and my PSA continued to drop from 1.7 ng/ml to 1.0 ng/ml. I had expected a sharper drop but my urologist said the result was good and it was important that the PSA stayed low for a period of time.He saw no need to change my treatment at this stage and he is reviewing my PSA every 3 months.

I spent 10 days at a Tao Buddhist health resort in Chiang Mai Thailand which was an interesting experience. Concentration on good food, exercise, massage and Chinese medicine. I need to go back for at least a month as I feel this type of treatment could greatly assist.

UPDATED

April 2006

Just spent a month at a Chiang Mai health resort in Thailand and felt really good as a result. Food was organic and plenty of exercise in morning and evening. No coffee or alcohol allowed. Had also treatment from a Chinese doctor who had plenty of success with acupuncture on many of the guests. In my case concentrated on building up my energy and immune system. Also can eliminate any pain.

Everyone was positive about everything. No negativity. PSA has remained at 1.0 ng/ml but only receiving 3 monthly Eligard shot. No other medication. No real side effects apart from low libido. No hot flushes. Plenty of energy. Realise most men prefer to adopt a more aggressive approach to cancer treatment but I intend to enjoy my good quality of life whilst building up my immune system by whatever means possible.

Have stopped work to concentrate on my health and also to eliminate stress.

UPDATED

August 2006

Just received my latest PSA test which has dropped from 1.0 ng/ml to 0.80 ng/ml. Not a big drop but a welcome one as the PSA had been holding at 1.0 ng/ml for around four months. Still only having three monthly Eligard injections plus plenty of exercise and supplements and looking after my diet- hot flushes are increasing and not having any treatment yet.

UPDATED

December 2006

After spending 5 weeks in Europe my PSA increased from 0.8 ng/ml to 0.9 ng/ml. While my doctors were not worried about this it was the first time it had increased since diagnosis. I then decided to have another test 4 weeks later and the PSA went back to 0.8 ng/ml.

I decided to see an Oncologist to review my situation and he said to remain on my Eligard injections until my PSA started to rise.He also said there a number of drug trials now available in Australia for advanced disease.he also said the average time to hormone resistance was 3 years from diagnosis.

Off to Thailand again for 2 months at the health resort in Chiang Mai. Hoping for some PSA movement. It will be a good test to see the impact of diet and exercise over a 2 month period.

UPDATED

June 2007

Latest PSA has declined to 0.7 ng/ml the lowest so far after nearly 2 years of hormone treatment.

Have decided to increase physical activity such as more golf,tennis and exercise and also gym and swimming. I now have more energy and helps offset the effect of hormones.

Other changes have been fish oil tablets and also drinking alkaline water. Have installed a unit in the house so the water is on tap. Have developed benign positional vertigo which is apparently not a side effect but more annoying than anything. Being treated by a chiropractor and having some success.

My doctor is happy with my progress but said I will have to remain on hormone therapy for ever which is not a pleasant thought.

UPDATED

December 2007

Just celebrated Xmas 2007 with my family and still going OK. PSA 0.8 ng/ml in November 2007 after reaching 0.9 in August 2007 Had a scare a few months ago as hip problems from playing too much sport. Chiropractor was worried so had a CT scan but the mets had disappeared and I had a small protruding disc on the right hip. Cut back the sport to only gym work and golf. So no more tennis.

Back to Thailand in November 2007 for a stay at our health resort. Back into Chi Gung and good food. It makes a difference. Home for Xmas and then back again for a 2 month stay in January and February 2008.

Introduced into the Nutri energetics system using a NES machine. Had a test in Thailand and then came back to Australia to get the products as none available there. Saw an expert in Australia and had another test. It all depends on the interpretation. The Infoceuticals will hopefully boost my immune system and help fight the cancer have no idea whether this will work or not but the doctor at the Chiang Mai resort is going to use me as a case study. He is also looking at my diet and said I should go nearly strictly vegetarian. Also advised a detox program.

Still only receiving a 6 month Eligard injection and still OK after nearly 2 years and 6 months.

UPDATED

March 2008

Arrived back in Australia after nearly 3 months in Thailand at the health resort and pleased that my PSA remained stable at 0.8.

Had an appointment with my Urologist and received another 6 month Eligard injection.He was happy with my progress and suggested no other treatment was necessary as my PSA had remained stable for 2-1/2 years.

Had no special treatment in Thailand apart from good food and exercise with an emphasis on Chi Gung. I was interested to see that the health resort is promoting stem cell injections mainly for rejuvenation purposes but can also be used to boost the immune system.This is an exciting area of research which is not offered in Australia .It will be something to consider if the hormone therapy stops working although it is still regarded as experimental.

Still having NES treatment in Australia but hard to measure the effectiveness at this stage.

UPDATED

October 2008

PSA has now increased from 0.8 to 0.9 and 1.1 over a 6 month period so now two consecutive increases. Doctor says if it continues to increase will suggest adding Zometa a bisphosphonate. Still prefer to try natural methods to hold PSA. Have undergone a natural health program with Canhelp an Australian cancer charity who have had good success with all types of cancer. The program consists of a zero GI diet, resistance training, grape seed extract and vitamin B17.

Also being treated by a German new medicine practitioner.

Will be having another PSA test in 2 weeks so hoping for the upward trend to be stopped.

UPDATED

March 2009

Today just back from my doctor and pleased that my PSA had dropped from 1.3 just before Xmas to 1.1 thereby reversing a worrying upward trend.

So no additional medical treatment needed at this stage. I believe the reversal was the result of spending 2 months in a Thailand health resort concentrating on tai chi, chi gung and meditation. Also reduced my weight from 92kg to 78kg by reducing my sugar intake. Very low GI diet and also undertaking resistance training.

Received a 6 months Eligard injection today and my doctor said I should have a bone scan in 6 months when I will have completed 4 years on ADT.

UPDATED

May 2009

Have just had my amalgam fillings removed as this had been advised by a number of health practitioners to do this. Did have some detox effect but not sure of PSA effect. Will know soon when I have my next PSA test in June.

My other blood tests remain normal and my local doctor has taken me off my blood pressure tablets on a temporary basis and also reduced the statins I am on to a lower dosage.

I spent some time recently at a retreat for cancer survivors organised by a local cancer charity "Bloomhill Cancer Help". Mainly female with breast cancer and it was interesting to note that nearly all had aggressive treatment including chemo and radiation. I was in much better shape due to no chemo or radiation . The charity is an excellent support network and provides massage, reiki, meditation ,walking and counselling.

I was surprised at the benefit that can come out of this type of meeting and I will be spending more time in various activities there in the future.

UPDATED

July 2009

My last PSA showed a disappointing increase from 1.1 to 1.8 the highest in nearly 4 years although it was 1.3 in December 2008. Had an appointment with my Urologist and he suggested I have a bone scan and see on Oncologist before my next appointment with him in Sept 2009.

Will be going back to our Thailand health resort next week for a 5 week stay and will be concentrating on the many natural treatments that are available. Hoping can get the PSA back under control otherwise I am sure the Oncologist will be prescribing some more drastic treatment than the monotherapy I am receiving at present.

UPDATED

August 2009

Have been in Chiang Mai Thailand for over three weeks using natural therapy so decided to have a PSA test at a leading Chiang Mai hospital to see whether the natural treatments were making any impact. Was very pleased to see that my PSA has dropped from 1.8 to 1.37 a drop of 25%. [Whilst not wishing to rain on Ian's parade, it must be noted that it is not always possible to make a direct comparison between PSA tests that are not run in the same laboratory, using the same manufacturer's test equipment - see PSA 101] Still a bit too high but have again reversed a worrying uptrend.

My daily regime has included Tai chi, Qi gung, meditation, acupuncture, Chinese medicine, gym work and occasional golf. In addition I had some treatments from a Sharman who performed an exorcism on me.

I am still having hormone treatment. Had a 6 month Eligard injection in March.

Back to Australia in two weeks and due to have another PSA test in mid September together with a bone scan. Will see my Urologist plus an Oncologist to review my situation.

UPDATED

September 2009

Back in Australia and my latest PSA was 1.7 which was higher than the Thai PSA; of 1.37 but slightly lower than the previous Australian PSA of 1.8. Also had a bone scan which showed no evidence of mets after 4 years.

Had an appointment with an oncologist and he thought I was having a good response to ADT after 4 years but the cancer appears to be showing some sign of growing. He suggested maintaining monotherapy and adding a bisphosphonate such as Zometa if and when my PSA continued to rise . His main aim was to maintain minimal toxic treatment to minimise side effects and ensure quality of life. Was interested in my apparent ability to drop PSA after spending time in the Thailand health resort and thought diet was the main reason for the success.

Need to continue to monitor PSA every 3 months.

UPDATED

December 2009

Just received my latest PSA test and PSA has fallen slightly from 1.7 to 1.6 after reaching a high of 1.8 in April 2009.Will not have to see my oncologist at this stage.Next test will be in March 2010 when I will receive my next Eligard 6 monthly injection.

Spent 3 weeks in Thailand doing a tai chi course recently and returning there at the end of December for a 10 week stay. Convinced the natural treatments are helping to keep my PSA under control. All my other blood tests were normal.However have increased my dosage of Zocor back to 80mg after dropping it to 40mg in the last 6 months.

Doing plenty of physical exercise which keeps side effects of ADT to a minimum.

UPDATED

March 2010

After spending 10 weeks in Thailand my PSA has increased from 1.6 to 1.7 It appears to be leveling off again after jumping up from 1.1 in March 2009. Had a test in Thailand a month ago and it was 1.7 so the tests results are now very similar.

My doctors are happy with my progress and have had my regular six month Eligard injection. No other treatment has been suggested apart from vitamin D3.

Now approaching the 5 year mark and finding it harder to stay motivated. Maintaining my diet and exercise regime plus increasing meditation is proving to be a great benefit.

UPDATED

June 2010

Latest PSA test was 1.9 an increase of 0.2 from 3 months ago and only 0.1 from 12 months ago. Disappointing but PSA appears to have stabilised.

No change in treatment but no trip to Thailand health resort. Going again in July so will be interesting to see if I can turn back the PSA after the trip.

My 5 year anniversary is in August so still feeling good and still active. Only issue is mild depression but meditation and physical activity helps overcome this.

UPDATED

September 2010

I have returned from Thailand and am disappointed that PSA has risen from 1.9 to 2.1 the highest since treatment began. Three years ago my lowest reading was 0.70 so it has increased three times in three years.

I need to reconsider my complementary therapies and will be seeing my urologist next week for my 6 monthly Eligard injection and maybe review my treatment options. I am still physically active; I attended a Cosmic Healing workshop in Thailand and will explore energy healing and spirituality in future.

UPDATED

February 2011

My last PSA test in December showed a small reduction to 2.0 thereby reversing an upward trend. Had an appointment with my oncologist and does not want to change my treatment although said I could go intermittent if I wanted to. Said my PSA is stable.

Finally had all my root canal teeth removed so hopefully now will see an improvement in my immune system.

Back in Thailand for two months concentrating on Tai Chi Qigong and meditation. Believe it all helps.

UPDATED

March 2011

Back from Thailand and experienced some minor health problems. Bad virus and stomach upset during a trip to Burma. Also my brother passed away from a blood clot but he had been diagnosed with multiple myeloma. A form of bone cancer.

My PSA increased from 2.0 to 2.4 the highest level yet but still a 2 year doubling time. I saw my urologist for my 6 monthly Eligard injection and he was not worried. I'm concentrating on exercise program plus continuing meditation etc and also reviewing diet and supplements that I am taking; hopefully will be able to stabilise PSA in the next 3 months.

UPDATED

June 2011

PSA has jumped from 2.4 to 4.1 in 3 months - very disappointing

I had gone on a high protein diet to lose some weight but no other treatment changes. My urologist said wait for September PSA result before changing treatment. Did not want to introduce second line hormone treatment at this stage. My quality of life is very good at present.

Going back to Thailand for five weeks in the health resort in July. These trips have always been beneficial in the past so hopefully this will continue.

UPDATED

November 2011

PSA in September has continued to increase to 5.6 so my Urologist suggested I should see my Oncologist about introducing a bisphosphonate to strengthen my bones. Had my first infusion a couple of weeks ago and some minor side effects. Having another infusion in 2 weeks and then a break whilst I have a 3 month Thailand visit. My Oncologist feels he has plenty of treatment options available next year and will include second line hormone therapy. But in no hurry to introduce more toxidity into my system at this stage. Looking at visiting China for a 3 week intensive treatment of medical Q Gung. Hoping will slow down my PSA growth.

UPDATED

December 2011

PSA continued to jump to 6.9 in late October just before I started Zometa infusions. Had 2 infusions - one end of October and one end of November. Pleased to see that PSA appears to have stabilised as last test early Dec was 7.0. Will continue infusions in the New Year.

UPDATED

April 2012

After spending 3 months in Thailand PSA continued to increase to 8.7. Started Zometa infusions again and also had my regular Eligard injection. My Urologist suggested a bone scan and my Oncologist said continue current treatment until later on in the year and monitor PSA. No other symptoms at this stage. Suggest might consider a clinical trial later in the year if PSA continues tp rise at the current rate. Continuing to keep myself fit and healthy with yoga,meditation,tai chi and golf. Also receiving regular acupuncture. Also taking plenty of supplements. Considering going to Beijing to attend a medical Chi Gung centre later on this year. Still feeling relatively optimistic and plenty of extra treatments available.

UPDATED

May 2012

Psa has increased to 11 but feeling ok and bone scan clear. Still on Eligard ADT and also monthly Zometa infusions. No additional side effects. Oncologist does not want to introduce 2nd line hormone therapy at this stage whilst my quality of life is good.

Still using complementary therapies. Yoga, tai chi, massage, acupuncture, meditation and playing good golf 3 times a week so no use complaining.

UPDATED

June 2012

Received my monthly Zometa infusion and PSA increased from 11 to 12 in 1 month. My Oncologist thought this was a good result as rate of growth is not accelerating. Agreed to cut back to 3 monthly Zometa. No other treatment planned. Started a herbal formula trial. Ayurstate from India. Received 3 months product in return for a monthly PSA report. Too early to see if any impact. Overall health still very good.

UPDATED

September 2012

PSA jumped to 17 in August and then slowed to 18 in September. Oncologist and Urologist decided not to introduce any new treatment options as all my blood chemistry is indication of no bone involvement and my overall health remains very good. Had a Zometa infusion and my regular 6 monthly Eligard injection. No more Zometa until march 2013 provided my December PSA result is ok.

Stopped taking the Ayurstate herbs in September as this may have contributed to the August PSA jump.

Continuing with my complementary treatments of yoga, meditation, acupuncture, tai chi and spiritual healing.

UPDATED

December 2012

PSA test in December showed an increase over 3 months from 18 to 21. While disappointing that it is still increasing at least the rate of growth is not accelerating.

No change in treatment and no new side effects. Still in good health and enjoying life.

Off to Chiang Mai health resort for 2 months before returning to see Oncologist and Urologist in March.

UPDATED

March 2013

After spending 2 months in Thailand PSA actually fell slightly from 21 to 20. The first fall in over 2 years. All other blood readings were normal and my Oncologist said it was a great result as my PSA appears to have leveled off again after rising last year. No change in treatment. Still having 6 monthly Eligard injections plus 6 monthly Zometa infusions. Still feeling very well and living an active lifestyle. Concentrating on yoga meditation and chi gung plus acupuncture.

UPDATED

July 2013

PSA has jumped from 20 to 30 which was a disappointing result after the recent fall. Also need to go to hospital this week to have a TURP. Fortunately my overall health is good and looking forward to some positive benefits from the procedure. Seeing oncologist at the end of August to review my treatment options and have a zometa infusion.

UPDATED

September 2013

Latest PSA up from 30 to 35. Disappointing but at least the rate of growth is slowing down. Saw my Oncologist and had my regular 6 month Zometa infusion. He suggests no change in treatment until I have a bone and CT scan in 3 months time. Also had my regular 6 monthly Eligard injection. Urologist happy with my recovery from my TURP operation. Still active and playing golf and continuing yoga, acupuncture and meditation.

UPDATED

February 2014

After my PSA jumped to 40 in December my Oncologist prescribed Anandron 150mg a second line hormone therapy. Went to Thailand and after 2 months my PSA has dropped to 3.6. The local Thai doctor did not believe the result but was checked twice. Also taking Chinese herbs. The result needs to be checked in Australia when I return in early March however all my other blood markers were normal. The side effects are minimal. Just feel a bit lethargic but ok if one remains active.

UPDATED

March 2014

Arrived back in Australia to see my Urologist and have a blood test and receive my Eligard six month injection. My PSA has dropped further to 2.7 so it is obvious the addition of Anandron a second line hormone therapy is continuing to have a dramatic effect on my PSA. My overall health remains good and today I played 18 holes of golf and won the competition with 40 stableford points. Going to enroll in an exercise trial at the University of Queensland which is starting to attract world wide attention showing the benefit of exercise on prostate cancer survivors.

UPDATED

June 2014

Pleased to see my PSA continue to drop to 1.9 so the ADT2 is still working. My Oncologist was very pleased and thought the PSA would stabilise around 3. However said it was obvious I was responding well to hormone treatment and that I will be a good candidate for other types of hormone therapy in the future-continued to be active with yoga, Pilates and golf. A naturapath has prescribed a high dose of tumaric so this is the only change to my supplement regime. Some negative side effects from the Anandron and feeling tired and lethargic but can prefer not to take any extra medications at this stage. I am sure my body will eventually get used to the extra hormone therapy. Still on 3 monthly PSA monitoring and 6 monthly Eligard injections.

UPDATED

September 2014

After a month trip to Thailand returned to see my Urologist for my regular 6 monthly Eligard injection. PSA has moved up to 3.1. Urologist happy with my progress and said my response to Anandron has been excellent. Having another test in December and see my Oncologist. Now 9 years since original diagnosis. Still feeling OK and continuing to practice Pilates twice a week, yoga and meditation weekly and golf twice a week. My weight has been increasing however and trying to address that by reducing carb and sugar intake.

UPDATED

December 2014

PSA has jumped to 6.9 and Oncologist said Anandron no longer working so advised me to stop taking it hoping to get a withdrawal effect. ALP had jumped which indicates increase in bone activity. Suggested a series of monthly injections of Xgeva a bone strengthening agent-will review in 3 months and if no improvement suggested start chemotherapy although Zytiga is an option although not on the PBS. I am off to Thailand for a 10 week stay so an incentive to improve my overall health. Everything else normal. Feeling good and remaining active.

UPDATED

March 2015

Spent nearly 3 months in Thailand but had an injury to my left hip after playing golf and having a thai massage. Lost mobility due to excessive pain in left leg. Went to Chiang Mai Bangkok hospital for Xray and MRI. Showed tissue damage but also mets so doctors there believed cancer related. The injury eventually resolved itself with pain killers and mobility returned. PSA test on return showed an increase to 37 so my Oncologist suggested Taxotere chemotherapy. An infusion every 3 weeks for 6 cycles. Not happy to do this but only way to access subsidised treatment in future of newer drugs. Had first infusion yesterday and no side effects yet but understand it is early days yet. Advised to keep exercising and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Oncologist suggested a PSA responses may not become obvious until the 4th cycle.

UPDATED

April 2015

Had my 3rd Taxotere infusion today and handling it reasonably well. PSA has dropped to 12 from 37 so it would appear the treatment is working and worth the pain. Keeping a treatment log and still able to play golf, attend yoga and Pilates classes although not as frequent. Eating OK, hair falling out but main problem is fatigue. The treatment cycle is between 6 and 9. The last dose was reduced by 10% as my white blood count was quite low initially after the 2nd infusion but it recovered back to normal in time for the 3rd infusion. So reasonably optimistic and looking forward to a long break from treatment after a few more months.

UPDATED

June 2015

Received 5th infusion of Taxotere today and it went well. All blood counts normal and PSA has continued to fall to 4.4 so the chemo is continuing to work. Side effects only fatigue. Oncologist said I could extend cycle to 4 weeks instead of 3 weeks as the effect starts to taper off so that will give me a better break between cycles a being able to play more games of golf.

UPDATED

August 2015

Having 7th infusion this week after a 5 week break in Thailand and PSA has continued to drop to 1.3 so a very pleasing result. Oncologist has suggested a 10% reduction in dosage and suggested we can extend cycle to 5 weeks as fatigue is building up. Tired for around 3 weeks and still managed 2 games of golf and tai chi and chi gung acupuncture and meditation. Hopefully 8th cycle will be the last and I will get a durable remission and go back to a normal life. At least I have avoided most of the side effects and only experienced fatigue.

UPDATED

September 2015

Before the 8th Chemotherapy cycle PSA remained stable at 1.3 and it appeared that the Taxotere had done its job and after discussion with Oncologist decided no more treatment was required. Also saw Uroligist and had my regular Eligard injection. Less fatigue this time due to lower dose and extended cycle to 5 weeks. Now need to slowly reduce steroids dose over a 6 months period to get back to normal. Need to reduce weight and improve fitness level. It has been 10 years since my original diagnosis so all my medical team are very happy with my progress.

UPDATED

November 2015

After PSA dropped to 1.3 stopped Taxotere for 2 months and PSA increased to 5.5. My normal Oncologist was on holidays and his offsider suggested starting taxotere again as I only had 7 infusions and 10 was the standard dosage. Reluctantly agreed and had the 8th infusion. PSA dropped to 3.4 so a good result. No real side effects. My normal Oncologist was quite relaxed with the result and we agreed to have a 9th infusion next week. Then off to Thailand for 2 months for a visit to our health resort. Back in February for another test and review of future treatment options. Still remaining very active with golf, Pilates and yoga plus doing some accounting work.

UPDATED

March 2016

Came back from a 2 month break in Thailand where I concentrated on medical Qigong acupuncture, Chinese medicine and Tai Chi-my PSA had risen to 11 but otherwise feeling OK. Saw Oncologist and agreed no more Chemotherapy at this stage. Give my body a rest. Agreed to see him at the end of April for a review of my situation. Said I had many treatment choices available. Saw my Urologist and had my 6 monthly Eligard injection. He was pleased with my progress and suggested a bone and CT scan in a couple of months. Trying to build my strength up with Pilates, yoga and golf. Had a small setback the other day with some hip pain from exercising too much but OK after having some physio. Looking at following up on medical Qigong as they are having success with cancer patients. Might visit Malaysia and China for treatment and try and delay starting another round of Chemotherapy.

UPDATED

May 2016

Since last update PSA test in April showed an increase from 11 to 21 in 2 months, so decided to start Taxotere again after a couple of holidays to Fiji and Malaysia where I had some Qigong treatment at the Wellness Medical Qigong centre in Kuala Lumpur with Master Tan. Also attended a 2 day workshop, so my Oncologist was surprised when my PSA dropped from 21 to 15 on my return. Decided to have a Taxotere infusion anyway and perhaps one more before I return to Thailand and Malaysia for some more medical Qigong treatment. Feeling optimistic about the future especially when one can mix standard and complimentary treatment.

UPDATED

June 2016

After the excitement of my previous big drop in PSA was slightly disappointed that PSA only dropped from 15 to 14 after starting Taxotere again so had another infusion and then off to Thailand and Malaysia for 2 months to concentrate on Qigong before coming back to Australia to continue with chemotherapy. However feeling quite ok and also having acupuncture from my long standing Chinese doctor. Will monitor my PSA whilst in Thailand to try and measure effectiveness of chemotherapy and qigong.

UPDATED

October 2016

Spent over 2 months in Thailand and it was very hot and humid. We sold our house before we left so much stress over that and will move into a new house on our return to Australia. Had a PSA test in Chiang Mai and PSA dropped to 12 following my last chemo infusion. Practiced Qigong and also had acupuncture in Thailand. Went to Malaysia for a weekend workshop and received some medical Qigong treatment. Disappointed when I got back to Australia and found my PSA had jumped in 2 months to 39 so started chemotherapy again. Fortunately it is still working and PSA dropped to 22 after 1 infusion. Back playing golf and attending Pilates classes. Side effects appear to be less if one does more physical exercise. The plan is to continue chemotherapy every 3 weeks until I return to Thailand via Malaysia in December for more medical Qigong treatment.

UPDATED

November 2016

Had an interesting time since my last post -during the house move slipped in the garage and sprained my foot so out of action for a few weeks and had to walk in a "moon boot" - despite another chemo infusion PSA jumped from 22 to 30 the first time this has happened so very disappointed -Oncologist said could have been due to the fall and he was proven correct because my next PSA yesterday was down from 30 to 23 =also managed 2 games of golf this week plus started Pilates again -so it would appear that chemo is managing my PSA and Oncologist wants me to continue taxotere as long it is effective and I can maintain a good quality of life-having my 15th chemo infusion today and then one more in December before going to Thailand and Malaysia for medical Qiging treatment for 2 months.

UPDATED

December 2016

Saw Oncologist today and PSA after 15th infusion has increased from 23 to 24 so it would appear that taxotere has done its job and as side effects such as fatigue were increasing we agreed that there will be no more chemo for the time being. He has prescribed Xtandi a tablet which is one of the newer drugs and available on the PBS - should be less toxic than chemo but does have side effects. Going overseas in just over 2 weeks so will have time to have 2 blood tests and see Oncologist again before I leave for Thailand and Malaysia. My current PSA level of 24 is the same as when I was originally diagnosed 11 years again so chemo managed to bring PSA down from 40 to 3 and then moved up to 24. I am convinced that chemo needs to be managed and one needs a break every few months. This is not in the procedure manual but I am sure my overseas stays has helped the chemo be more effective.

UPDATED

January 2017

Started Xtandi about a month ago and had a couple of liver function tests did not show any problems. Only side effect has been fatigue but not as much as with chemo. Visited my Qigong master in Malaysia for some some treatment and then went to Chiang for further Chinese traditional treatments-had a blood test at the Bangkok Hospital in Chiang Mai and was pleased that liver function test was normal but my PSA had dropped to 0.094 the lowest ever after 11 years. Realise it is possible to have lab error and will need to be checked again when I return to Australia next month but very pleased with the result and that Xtandi would appear to be working very well with minimum side effects. I am sure my Qigong treatment is also helping.

UPDATED

March 2017

Back to Australia in February to see my Oncologist and pleased to see that PSA has continued to drop to 0.045 again the lowest ever over an 11 year period. Only side effects are fatigue but still managing to play 18 holes of golf twice a week plus go to Pilates and yoga. Oncologist very happy with results and I now only have to see him every 3 months for a blood test and check up. Still trying to lose some of my excess weight as need to continue with steroids for a few months more.

UPDATED

May 2017

Had 3 monthly checkup and PSA has continued to fall to 0.016 the lowest ever so Xtandi is working for me. Fatigue is still a problem so Oncologist suggested a slight increase in steroid dose which has given me more energy. Also had Vertigo twice but my Physio was able to fix - whilst this is a possible side effect of Xtandi my Oncologist said as I had a case about 10 years ago this was not related.

Still on the golf course and practicing yoga and Pilates as well as receiving acupuncture weekly.

Back to Thailand and Malaysia in July for a 6 week stay before returning for my 3 month blood tests.

UPDATED

August 2017

Just arrived back from Thailand and Malaysia and saw my Oncologist after a blood test and PSA has continued to drop to 0.010 the lowest ever after 12 years so the Xtandi is certainly working after 8 months plus I believe I am getting some help from medical qigong and acupuncture.

The only problem is vertigo which had been continuous for 3 months despite trying many treatments. Will be seeing a specialist physio next week and hopefully she can assist.

Still suffering fatigue but otherwise OK. Back to golf and Pilates next week so I should not complain.

UPDATED

November 2017

Back from KL to see my Chigung master and a short holiday in Bali and was pleased to see my PSA dropping again to 0.008 the lowest ever. My Oncologist is naturally very pleased with the result and does not want to see me for another 3 months. The only issue I am having is physical. Had a back spasm upon from return from overseas and so no golf for a week. Going to the physio and it is coming good. Going back to Thailand for a 3 week stay before Xmas so 2018 is looking promising.

Ian's e-mail address is: ian AT vagg.com.au (replace "AT" with "@")


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