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Jim Cox lives in Missouri, USA. He was 72 when he was diagnosed in January, 2009. His initial PSA was 4.60 ng/ml, his Gleason Score was 8, and he was staged T1c. His choice of treatment was Surgery (Robotic Laparoscopic Prostatectomy). Here is his story.

I had the robotic assisted laparoscopic surgery on Monday April 13th, was released late afternoon of the 14th and had the catheter removed 8 days later. Constipation caused the greatest pain and I am still taking a stool softener and eating lots of prunes, so it is getting easier once a day.

What I was concerned about, though, until I read you other fellows' experiences was the periodic painful "spasms" of the penis and the almost burning sensation when I urinate, as well as the periodic extreme discomfort between the scrotum and the anus. Apparently that's pretty standard?

By the way, I had mine done by Dr. Gerald Andriole Chief of Urologic Surgery at the Washington University School of Medicine here in St. Louis.

Also, to anyone who has been diagnosed with prostate cancer...get a second opinion. My second biopsy by Dr. Andriole (2nd opinion Dr.) found more cancer than the first biopsy. However, some second opinions (I've heard) find LESS cancer which doesn't require the radical prostatectomy. [Jim is quite correct here - Active Surveillance studies are showing that about 25% of the men in the studies have negative second biopsies.]

Good luck to you all.

Jim C.

UPDATED

August 2010

Time does fly fast. Reminds me of an e-mail I received recently: how life is like toilet paper....the closer you get to the end, the faster it goes.

I'm doing very well following the prostate surgery as far as cancer is concerned. The final latest PSA showed "less than .01%," which is excellent. I still suffer from E.D., although I had a problem with that before the surgery, and, still wear "men's guards" because of a little leakage. But I did that also before the surgery.

All in all, I'm in excellent health. Had a hernia repaired 4 weeks ago. In at 5:30 a.m., surgery at 7:30, at 8:30 Dr. Brent Matthews was telling my wife all was well, and at 10:30 I was in the car headed home. No stitches, just superglue. Amazing. Back on the tennis courts in 3 and a half weeks.

Jim.

UPDATED

January 2012

I didn't realize it had been that long since I updated my story. I'm now 75 years and 8 months old, cancer-free and healthy enough to play tennis 3-4 times a week and go skiing at least once a year. I am very grateful for that. The prostate was removed in 2009, it was two months before I could get back on the courts. PSA test a week ago still showed less than .01.

The only negative side effect, at least for me, is the continued E.D. Viagra and other drugs like that don't work. I tried something called "Muse" which involves a type of very small suppository introduced into the urethra. It created an erection, but is very expensive and my insurance doesn't cover it. My urologist suggested that I try the Pos-T-Vac vacuum system, which a friend says works very well. We are considering it. I'll let you know.

Yes, there's a "lot of snow on my roof" but a smoldering "fire in the furnace" just waiting to flame up.

Best wishes for a great 2012!

Jim

UPDATED

April 2012

Nothing new to report. Still healthy, and grateful, and grateful for the info I received in '09 from YANA when I was searching.

Jim Cox

UPDATED

July 2012

Just turned 76, healthy, playing tennis 3-4 times a week. A friend suggested I try the vacuum pump for E.D. Wife not that interested. Anybody using it? Thanks and thanks to you, Terry for keeping it going. Jim

UPDATED

August 2013

At age 77, I'm still healthy, playing tennis, skiing, enjoying traveling. In fact, about a year and a half ago my wife talked me into buying a 30-ft. 5th wheel travel trailer and a 3/4 ton diesel 4x4 with which to tow it. It has been a year's worth of LEARNING experiences, some of which have increased the sphincter factor:>) She finally agreed to try the vacuum pump. A large part paid for by my Medicare PPO. It works well with a little practice. The down side is that you are only supposed to wear the constrictors for 30 minutes. With the prostate removed there is no ejaculation if you have an orgasm. We've only used it twice, and although there was no orgasm, the loving intimacy was worth it. Still grateful to be alive and very healthy.

UPDATED

September 2014

I truly am grateful that I have been cancer-free since my cancerous prostate was removed. My overall health is excellent for a guy who is 78 years young. My thoughts are for those who are still fighting.

UPDATED

October 2015

I am grateful that I am still in good health at age 79 and 4 months, still playing tennis and pickleball 3-4 times a week, skiing at least one week a year. 3 years ago my wife and I decided to become RVers, starting out with a 30 ft. 5th wheel and a 2003 3/4 ton diesel truck. It was more work than either of us knew about, so in May of 2014 we traded for a 35 ft. Class A motorhome. So much more pleasant that I call the two years with the "fiver" RV Bootcamp! I chose the radical prostatectomy because Dr. Andriole said it offered the best chance of quickly getting all the cancer and allowing me to live longer. So far, so good. Don't hesitate to email me if you have any questions. And, Mark, thanks for continuing this website!

UPDATED

November 2016

Thank God, we caught the cancer just in time seven years ago. I am now a healthy 80 year old, playing tennis 2-3 times a week, pickleball periodically and yoga twice a week. The E.D. is not treatable with Viagra or other drugs, but the vacuum pump worked fine.

UPDATED

August 2017

Thank God, I am still alive and cancer free at age 81. I think it is important to stay as physically and mentally active as possible, even on days that you may not feel like getting up and going out. I still play tennis 2-3 times a week, pickleball 1-2 times a week and yoga twice a week. I've been going to a yoga class since 2008. The teacher tells us that stretching the muscles and ligaments releases toxins which are then flushed out of the body through urine, feces and sweat. Our Medicare preferred PPO is connected to something called "Silver Sneakers," and they pay my membership at the YMCA and my tennis club. Great way to save money. BTW, regardless of what you may have heard from some religious denominations, Yoga is NOT a Hindu religion and has not affected my relationship to Jesus. I daily thank God that I am alive and happy to help anyone.

Jim's e-mail address is: jamehcox1936 AT gmail.com (replace "AT" with "@")


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