THERE WAS NO RESPONSE TO AN UPDATE REMINDER IN 2018 SO THERE IS NO UPDATE.
Although not always positive my PCa experience has raised me to a new level of understanding life. Negative statements following do not indicate my overall attitude but are included to show the reality of my situation.
In May 2006, a co-worker brought a blood pressure cuff to work one day and my blood pressure registered 180/115. Time to see the doctor. I had not had a physical since early 2004 as a follow up to a melanoma that was successfully removed in June 1999. Between the surgery and my last physical, I had religiously been in at least every six months for follow up. Each time my PSA was 3. The May 2006 physical showed a slightly enlarged prostate which was normal for my age but a few days later I got a call from the doctor's office to come in and discuss my PSA score which was now 29. Quite an increase for 2 ½ years. My urine test was positive so I began antibiotics and was referred to a Urologist.
This led to cystoscopy and more antibiotics to treat a chronic UTI. Finally, in August, I had my next PSA test and it came back 21. This wasn't the news I was expecting and I was scheduled in for a biopsy. Painless, no way, especially with the sound of a staple gun going off where the sun don't shine, but I did recover quickly. In early September, I got the news that I did indeed have prostate cancer. 3 out of 10 cores (one lobe) were positive with clear margins. Gleason was 3+4=7. I had been doing my research so the news was not as shocking as the first revelation of melanoma as I had read that PCa is not the end of life like with a spreading melanoma.
It was time to take action. My Urologist suggested surgery but wanted me to talk with a Radiation Oncologist for a second opinion. Bone scan was negative and CAT showed one slightly enlarged node (was it a leftover from the infection?) I was staged at T1c. I became interested in brachytherapy as the primary treatment. The Oncologist agreed if I started Lupron and stated that pelvic EBRT (5 weeks), Lupron for two years, and Brachytherapy seed "boost" would be the best chance for a "curative attempt". Since my disease didn't fit any textbook cases, I would have to get treatment for the most aggressive symptom, high PSA. I took my first Lupron injection Nov. 3 for two reasons: Buy more time for research, and to help shrink the prostate. It was Thanksgiving weekend when I finally decided to get combined treatment done in Alaska as there was a new hospital about a mile from my residence and I couldn't find a facility with newer equipment. It was about then that I began to notice the effects of the Lupron, mainly hot flashes, cold sweats, and no erections.
I felt like I owed it to myself to have one last blow-out before my life took a turn south. I booked a Christmas trip for Phoenix and Vegas to be with family before the ordeal started. I went in for the pre-radiation SIM Dec. 22, got the three little tattoos and then headed to the desert.
I returned on the red eye Jan.8 and started EBRT that afternoon. Nothing remarkable about that first treatment and my blood test showed that the pre-radiation Lupron had reduced my PSA to 5.9. After returning home after my third treatment, fatigue sat in and while resting on the couch, I could feel something cooking down there. On the Sunday following my second week of EBRT urinary problems set in. These were very uncomfortable and were brought under control in about 48 hours with Flomax and Pyradoxin. The Oncologist said that this was very unusual to have these symptoms so early in treatment but that all patients are different. The effects of the Lupron seemed to be lessening throughout the EBRT but then it was time for my second injection on Feb. 5. A blood test at that time showed my PSA had fallen to 2.
The rest of my EBRT treatments were uneventful but a nuisance to be at the hospital every day at 3:30. After my final treatment I emerged from the accelerator room to a "graduation" ceremony complete with diploma and the receptionist (a retired music teacher) playing a march on her trumpet. On the way home, I thought to myself that this was gonna be easy. Ha Ha.
By now I was ready for the seeding and really eager to put all this behind me. I thought that I would get in for the procedure in a couple weeks but that date stretched out to 5 weeks. In the meantime PSA had dropped to 1.09. Due to my location I was now trying to coordinate three doctors, four clinics and two hospitals as the seeding procedure was not an option at my local hospital but in Anchorage 40 miles away. Finally, I got the word that things were moving again. A couple more weeks of blood tests, chest x rays, etc. and I was in the surgery center at the Anchorage hospital for my volume study. My treatment so far had shrunk my prostate from an estimated 45cc down to 32cc. On Friday, Mar. 23, I went in for the procedure. I was to go under at 3:30 and the procedure was to last about two hours. I didn't get wheeled in to the OR until 3:45 and was thinking to myself that his would be a late night.
The first thing I remembered in the recovery room was that the clock on the wall said 5:17. Boy that was quick, I thought. Then reality set in. I was glad that the doctor had warned me of this. That it would be painful and I would feel an extreme urge to void. This would be impossible as the last thing while being under would draining the bladder so there would be nothing to void. After a couple doses of Demerol through my IV and peeing in a jug about a half an hour later, I was on my way home. I was surprised when I arrived at my doorstep at 7:30 that same evening. I started my Tylenol 3's and had a fairly restful night until I woke up about 5 am and had to go. I was pretty freaked out as I lost control in the bathroom before I could get it aimed at the toilet and proceed to go all over the place. This was my routine for the next two mornings as well. Monday found me calling the doctor for more pain medication Monday but to no avail. Try Aleve with Tylenol in between, I was told.
That week was one of discomfort and its hard to remember back now as to the severity of the symptoms. My post op SIM was that Friday, Mar.30. Everything looked good. The x ray looked like I had gone hunting with Dick Cheney and caught a load of buckshot in the groin area. 97 Pd103 seeds through 28 needles. Another week and I was beginning to feel symptom free. That's when the seed radiation started kicking in. Its now been 5 weeks since the implant and symptoms are still going downhill. Although I went back to work a week after the procedure, I have to stay within short distance of the restroom. No incontinence, but a full feeling bladder for me is now around 4 oz, down from about a quart before treatment. Most times I just sit down as the nerves are all mixed up down there and I'm not always sure what's coming out. The seeds are really cooking and I expect that it will be another couple weeks before things start slowly improving. I have no erectile response , even with Viagra, but continue to take it every third day or so as it gives me a 6-8 hour break from urinary symptoms which are 24/7. Its just so damn expensive!
What does the future hold? At the follow up at my Urologists, he stated that this very aggressive treatment should keep me disease free for at least five years, with a very good chance of being "cured". The odds should even be better if I continue the Lupron for a total of two years. PSA should drop to a "negligible" level but this will not be valid until at least six months after the Lupron wears off. He says that I'll look back on this five years from now and that even though I went through a couple "shitty" years, I shouldn't have to worry about further involvement with PCa.
A few other ideas: Lupron is a f**cked up drug, I hate it. Besides hot flashes, people are saying I look good and have lost weight. This is a blessing in disguise as almost all of it is muscle. I have cognitive difficulties when attempting to multi-task. I now have flab under my arms when I flex and massive cellulite on my upper legs where the muscle used to be. Boobs are bigger. I'm losing all my post-pubic hair (not that big of deal). I'm sure Lupron is a major player in my impotence. I've started having occasional mood swings. Such as the day my van broke down, leading to a rough day and culminating later that day when the grill ran out of propane while cooking my son dinner. This sent me over the edge and I turned into a complete blithering idiot that night. Losing control like this is very frightening to me. Other side effects such as anaemia, depression, and lack of sleep seem to be complicated by the Lupron. Unfortunately, I believe that I really need this to win so my next dose will be in the form of Viadur (one year). After that I will need two more 3 mo. injections next year. I can only hope after all that, my pituitary gland returns to normal and I get my testosterone. I never realized how genitally oriented males in our modern society are before!
Taking care of my health is job number one, whether it is appropriate exercise, monitoring diet, fluid intake, or blood pressure. Antidepressants do help (I've always been against using them). Don't forget the mental health: It wasn't until the mood swings started that I started to realize the issues I need to deal with. Like being pissed off and I am pissed about it. Anger and depression go hand in hand with the treatments. Its hard to get out every day and put on a positive front if you're not dealing with your anger. Dealing with these issues allows you to redirect feelings in a positive direction.
I still remain positive that I will be able to put this all behind me though and I've got the most wonderful son and good friends to get me through. I've come to the realization that this will take more time than I originally though it would. I will try and post updates. I am still disappointed that with all the treatment information available that there are few articles to reference about my treatment. The articles address hormones + EBRT, hormones + Brachy, and EBRT + Brachy, but not hormones + EBRT + Brachy. So I wish there was more out there on this. Overall though, my outlook is great and I'm looking forward to my new life without the threat of PCa. If there are any questions or comments, please contact me.
GOOD NEWS! Saw both the Urologist and the Radiologist last week and the outlook is very encouraging. PSA less than 0.05 ng/ml. DRE revealed that my prostate is "very small and flat". Was expecting pain after all it has been through but was just the usual dreaded discomfort. (Just be sure to wipe real good afterward or you'll feel like your sliding out of your seat on the drive home!) Leuprolide is still an issue with many annoying and undesirable side effects. I keep a journal on medications, side effects, and other concerns. Below I'm pasting what I presented to the doctors as an update:
Other issues (not in any order):
Follow-up Colonoscopy: Initial (29Jul07) revealed two flat polyps in ascending colon they were not able to get! Follow-up was scheduled for 10 Oct07.
Hot flashes/cold sweats
Cognitive and memory lapses
Easily Fatigued - improved
Vertigo/Dizziness - improved
Urinary: Occasional Frequency, Urgency, no burning, Interrupted stream, Sometimes hard to get started, incomplete bladder voiding. Overall symptoms slowly much better, most of the time no problems!! Have to go usually 2 times/night, sometimes 3
ED – Cialis seems to work best although first couple times had delayed back and leg discomfort. Not as effective (Levitra and Viagra too) as a month ago.
Rectal function – normal
Anxiety Level – improving although occasionally get up "on wrong side of bed"
Increased physical activity – walking 5miles/day 5x week. Has improved breathing a great deal.
Still taking Flomax nightly and found out that it's still really needed after a recent three day out of town trip when I left them at home. Took a few days after that to get back to where I was before the trip.
Leuprolide has affected skeletal muscles. Every morning after walking the previous day, I get up feeling like it was the first time I had walked in months – sore and stiff. They're still flabby and have acquired a classic pear shaped body type. Have gained a little weight due to increased appetite with physical activity. Cholesterol went up to 207. I think this is due to my eating two eggs every morning since I started walking. I've cut back on the red meat and am eating more Salmon and using egg substitute.
Anyway I can now see the light at the end of the tunnel! Looking forward to "complete" recovery when finished with the Leuprolide sometime after Jan. 09.
Off now to enjoy fall fly fishing for Rainbow Trout. - p
Besides work, this winter has found me walking a lot, probably at least 15 mi./week. This hasn't been easy as the first leg of my morning walk is up a big (and I mean big) hill about ½ mi. It's been fraught with sub-arctic wind chills to -50F (-45C), blowing snow, ice and sand, and moose. This somehow makes me feel empowered no matter how crazy it may seem. It was just this week that the light from the sun has started lighting my way for the first time in about 3 months. I walk sometimes in town or in hilly terrain around my home in the afternoon as time allows. I also transferred from a desk bound job to one with a lot of physical activity. This is the good news. The not so good news is that the Leuprolide has now become the hardest part of my journey. I've gained 20 lbs, was 35! Hot flashes and sweats are unbearable. I guess this is a good time to list the complaints I gave to the Urologist yesterday:
Interrupted sleep - due to hot flashes
Hot flashes/cold sweats
Cognitive and memory lapses - increasing
Muscle tone - decreasing
Easily Fatigued Vertigo/Dizziness - much improvement (still positional situations have effect)
Urinary: Occasional Frequency and urgency, no burning, Interrupted stream, Sometimes hard to get started, incomplete bladder voiding. Overall symptoms stabilized, most of the time no problems!! Have slept a few nights through although usually get up to relieve 2 x/ night due to hot flashes. About once every two weeks slight leakage when I'm shaving in the morning.
ED - Cialis seems to be working better, leg and back pain not as severe
Rectal function - normal
Anxiety Level - improving although occasionally get up "on wrong side of bed".
Alcohol - mostly beer and red wine - average 2-3 drinks/night
Physical activity - Walking 30 min./day 5 x/ week. Temperature has limited activity for the last week. Some light upper body weight lifting/w 2.5 lb. Barbells.
Bone and joint pain, especially in the morning and seems to affect heel regions and calf muscles most.
Fat deposits and breast enlargement.
Anaemia has not been addressed (included in CBC?) Most "body hair gone" on legs and torso - no big deal. Tells me Viadur is working.
Diet - high in fiber, lots of raw vegetables, fruits, nuts, etc. Decrease in red-meat consumption. Still I want to eat everything in sight.
I've gained about 20 lbs.
PSA tested Monday was < 0.05 (undetectable) which is in itself is the best reason to keep up the hormone. Also talked about my upcoming Viadur removal in May. Doc says not enough long term research to discontinue use after it's removed so I have decided to finish the route with two 3mo Lupron. Advised Megace for hot flashes, so I filled the prescription and started last night.
Visited the Urologist today and had my Viadur implant removed and had a 4-month Lupron injection. I expected to get a three month Lupron injection, followed by the last one in August. The Doctor said that my signs are good enough that a total of 22 months will be enough. PSA remains undetectable.
I'll paste my particulars below:
Interrupted sleep - due to dry mouth, stopped up nose, and urgency
Cognitive and memory lapses - increasing, scary!
Muscle tone - decreasing Chronically fatigued
ED - Cialis seems to be working better, leg and back pain not as severe.
Libido - "preservation" is really tough
Rectal function - normal
Anxiety Level - borderline depression - "How long is this going to take?"
Alcohol - beer or red wine - average 2-3 drinks/4xweek
Physical activity - Walking 30 min./day 5 x/ week. Stationary bicycle 10 min. morn. and eve. 5 days/week Can't comfortably get past 10 min. mark. - occasional lifting/w 2.5 lb. Barbells.
I'm scheduled for a PSA in September and don't have to see the Urologist until January. I'll continue to update as new information becomes available.
Update on my physical progress: Just got the results from my physical exam with my GP last week. His word, "Just keep doing what you're doing". The blood test came back mostly normal with slightly elevated cholesterol and triglycerides which I attribute to Lupron side effects as I'm on a pretty strict diet of 2000 calories a day. Medication not needed at this time. Chest x-ray: normal. I was a little stressed waiting for the results and expecting the worst so I was surprised to get such a glowing report.
Physically, I'm now experiencing less joint pain, fatigue, and depression which I attribute to my exercise routine which consists of a 10 minute "ride" on the stationary bike morning and evening and a mid day jaunt up to 10 miles on my mountain bike 4-5 days a week. This has resulted in an increase of hot flashes though even with 20mg megestrol a day but overall I'm feeling so much better that I don't care. My pulse returns to normal within 10 minutes but sweating can go on for half hour or more so I make sure to stay hydrated. I have been cleared to go "aerobic" which would mean increasing the stationary routine gradually to 20 minute or more sessions. I am having trouble still with weight 250 lbs. now compared with about 270 in Feb. Am hoping that aerobic exercise will have effect on losing a lot more weight.
ED still an issue but things are improving all the time with the use of Cialis. Waiting for the Lupron to wear off to see if there's further improvement but it might take another year or so for T levels to increase.
My next Uro and PSA scheduled for mid-September (when the Lupron is supposed to be out of my body). I expect to update then. Exercise has really been beneficial, just remember to take it easy at first and consult with your physicians when you feel the need to make any changes to your routine.
Had my three month PSA and check-up October 2. PSA is still undetectable! I met with the PA rather than my regular URO. The word "cure" was used although I still take this info cautiously.
After that the PA inquired as to my ED which is improving greatly even while experiencing ADT side effects. I think it is important to note that this "improvement" has taken over a year and a half, with twice daily Kegels, weekly Cialis 20mg., and biweekly "exercise". From the many posts on the YANA discussion forum it seems like many of us are becoming discouraged if the first couple of ED pills don't result in anything other than side effects but in my case persistence has paid off and the side effects seem to go away after a couple months of regular use. I strongly disagree with the posters claiming erections are not possible while on ADT. I need to EMPHASIZE again - it won't happen overnight - don't give up!
We discussed the use of Flomax as I forgot to bring it with me on a four day trip. By the morning of the fifth day it took awhile to get the old stream started which was very alarming. I took two after getting back home and pretty much opened up to normal within about three hours. I was told that I would probably be a Flomax junkie for life as there is currently no treatment to stretch/expand the urethra after seeds and EBRT. He explicitly ruled out TURP in my case which is just fine with me - I don't ever want anything poking or snipping down there again after all it's been through. So regular Flomax it will be.
I finished 22 months of Leuprolide last month. This has been the most challenging ordeal of my saga (and life) so far. ADT side effects are still a major downer to my Quality of Life. Hot flashes ( I refused another prescription for Megace due to weight gain and bloating), muscle wasting, extreme fatigue, and increased fat deposits (even with my biking up to 30 min./5days/week - 9 months ago I couldn't get past 10 min. and now I can do the 30 min. without becoming winded). I refer to my fat stomach, noodle arms and legs, and hairless lower body as "the freak show". I was told that all of this would start to subside in about 9 more months - thank God!
I'm still on a pretty structured diet and while I haven't given up many foods that aren't recommended I have really cut down on them. I'll just say that in the last year and a half that I avoid restaurants like the plague, have eaten only 1 donut, several slices of pizza, and have given up all soda pop and beverages sweetened with high fructose corn syrup substituting water, pomegranate/cranberry juice mixture, and green tea. Fresh fruit, cruciferous vegetables, whole grains, brown rice, and beans are now my main staples I still manage to have several beers every week though.
I still feel like my life is in holding pattern but I have been out to a few social events lately. The biggest drawback being the crap food that is always there and others saying "try this". I'm sure it all tastes great - but it's no longer for me. There is also the small talk as to how I'm progressing which gets kinda old after being asked for the third or fourth time. I'm still amazed about the lack of knowledge about PCa out there, but hey, that's where I was two and a half years ago!
Short update - 3 month PSA less than 0.05. No change in side effects or physical activities. Pretty routine at this stage. Waiting for T level to return along with the expected slight rise in PSA. Keeping my fingers crossed!
I still waking at 4:00 AM due to pretty significant hot flashes! My last shot was a 30mg. Lupron (4 month) given early May 2008 for a total of 22 months on the drug. The drug should have been out of my body last September.
Here's what I've found out. In almost all men discontinuing Lupron, the pituitary gland starts putting out Leutenizing Hormone (stimulates T production in the Leydig Cells of the testes) about 90 days after the drug is stopped. What happens next seems to vary with the individual and that is renewed (or not) production of testosterone. The Leydig cells vary in the time it takes to start doing their thing again. (if indeed they will start back)
In my case that started around April 09 when the hot flashes diminished in frequency, hair, libido, and strength started coming back, and I noticed much more energy. I was one of those patients that seemed to have all the worst side effects. I had a T test in May and it came back low normal. I suspect that it's still rising (T) but the occasional severe hot flash still seems to occur. I wouldn't be surprised if this will be the case in the long term.
Glad to be Lupron free, I must focus all of my efforts into getting in top shape in case I have to start the drug again. I for one don't believe there is any magic formula out there to predict recovery from ADT.
Lots happening since my last update. I'll start with the good first. Passed my annual physical exam with flying colors! Chest X-ray and EKG normal, CBC normal, my cholesterol has come down 30 points since last year (w/o meds) and I've lost 35 lbs. ED not significant especially with Cialis, absent are the hot flashes - no Lupron has made a difference!
Since I posted "Passing Seeds" on August 11 on the discussion forum, my life has been nothing but agony. Frequent urination, urgency, some minor leaking, pain, infection, and depression have all but sidelined me from attempting normal activities. I know of at least six seeds that have passed (the latest tonight) and I'm pretty sure that more have slipped out that I haven't noticed. Had cystoscopy in early July that showed sloughing in the prostate area and areas of inflammation in the bladder. Let me tell you, getting that scope up there with inflammation is as nasty as anything I've ever endured. Urine analysis showed enterococcus was present and that it would respond to Cipro. I am almost done with the 30 day 1000 mg./day regimen but am still worried about lack of progress. I was also placed on Toviaz for bladder spasms but have just quit due to retention. When things get really uncomfortable I also take Pyridium although that's a very messy drug when you dribble your bladder dry.
I'm currently unable to ride my bike due to discomfort. Walking might get me in a situation of being too far from the bathroom. I've had to do my shopping at odd hours to avoid standing in line and I am pretty much homebound. I am sticking with a pretty strict diet of around 1500 calories/day so the weight doesn't come back. Most nights are pretty sleepless having to get up every hour to relieve myself.
I had my PSA today and it was up to 0.31 from 0.16 in May. I'm not too surprised as there is lots of inflammation down there. Originally we had discussed a nadir of no higher than 0.30 so I'll be looking forward to getting over this to see what happens. I go back to the Urologist next week but he seems to be stumped as to the cause of the seeds coming out. Saw him a month ago and he said he'd have to consult with his peers in Seattle and Denver to see if they could shed some light on my situation.
Well things started happening pretty fast and I became fearful that my urinary restriction would lead to kidney failure. My research shows that only 1% of brachytherapy patients have to submit to this procedure (TURP) which is generally not recommended but I was at my wits end and decided to get it over. I went through a "gentle TURP" August 19.
Upon waking from the day surgery, I was stunned to have a catheter. The original plan was to have just the sloughing cells removed, no catheter, and be up and around in a couple days, but it was a little more extensive. The catheter stayed in for five days and now a week and a half later I have stopped the diapers and have regained continence. This has been a living hell though and am still experiencing enough pain and discomfort to where sleep is all but impossible.
Later I found out that the path report from bladder and prostatic tissue is negative!
I'm trying to stay positive though and have returned to work on a light schedule. I started walking and the whole thing is like starting over from the after effects of the brachy over two years ago although this ordeal has been much harder to cope with. I'm looking forward to getting back on the bike in a couple months although I feel that I've probably lost my stamina from all the time off. It's gonna be quite the challenge to get back into the habit of exercise again. I have lost weight and hope to keep it off and I think that it is helping with the recovery.
I must give credit to my good friends and family who have been supportive of this latest episode of my PCa journey.
My journey over the last year started off very rough. Extreme pain, passing more seeds, lack of sleep, and extreme fatigue. The list could go on but I'll try and stay brief.
I was finally approved by my insurance provider for Hyperbaric Therapy in late October and started the 60 treatments the next day and ran through most of December. It was a three hour commitment every day during that time. While this didn't totally cure the symptoms, it sure did improve them! Comparatively speaking, pain went from a unbearable 8 down to about 2 or 3. Finally resolved in March 2010. Doctor said that without this treatment that my body could have taken up to a couple years to heal.
Today I find myself In relatively good health but am showing signs of osteopenea in my ribs and jaw (from x-rays) so I'm looking at having molars extracted. Undoubtedly, these effects were due to the two years of Lupron. My weight is down to 205 and I've lost sixty pounds since I blimped up. I've been on an exercise restriction so I've been walking a lot and vigilantly controlling my diet.
My latest visit to the Urologist last week showed another slight increase in my PSA which has now crept up to 0.40. (Since last update: 0.20, 0.06, 0.22) Only time will tell if this means failure or another bounce due to radiation. The Urologist suggested that I start doing some weight lifting so I'm in the market for an exercise system that will meet my needs. He also suggested that I double my daily intake of Calcium and D. Bike riding will have to wait until Spring.
My sleeping habits have improved to no more than three wake ups a night which sure beats every 45 minutes or so. Continence has also improved to where I'm back in my skivvies from pads and diapers for 9 months after my TURP. I only occasionally leak a drop or two when lifting or bending over.
While I don't like the prospect of going back to ADT, I plan to lose some more weight as insurance that I won't become obese again if and when that time comes. My next Doctor visits (URO and RAD) with PSA test are scheduled in February and I will update then.
After three successive increases in PSA over a year, (Doc considered biological failure) I started back on my daily regimen of 8oz. pomegranate juice. My last two readings came back down from 0.4 to 0.18 today!
Although I have no scientific evidence to support this, I'm a believer. I'll be the first to admit that this is no "miracle cure". I'm four years+ out of radiation and two years off of Lupron. If you do try pomegranate read the label and only buy pure juice. Many companies put pomegranate on the label but most are heavily diluted with corn syrup, apple, grape. or other fruit juice. This is one thing that if it doesn't help won't hurt either.
Not much in the way of any disease progression in the last year although Terry's email to update reminded me that I'm about 2 weeks behind in getting a PSA test.
Continuing on a fairly strict diet and exercise. After lots of bike riding, (24 mi. this evening) I am finally getting the muscle tone back in my legs that disappeared while I was on Lupron. Still a leak here and there when least expecting or doing certain movement. Nothing that makes more than a spot in the undies though. Might be an age thing! Cialis still works.
Beer in moderation. If weight goes over 210 - no beer. Have to be careful though - when you gotta go you gotta go. A margarita or red wine here and there. Still drinking the pomegranate.
Big thing in my life is retirement right now. I am buying a home an hour west of Phoenix and plan to move down in about a year which is a couple months after my last day at work. This after much deliberation where location and economics won out. My son will also graduate from college next May - that I don't want to miss.
If there is any change in my status after my next PSA, I will update. Bless everyone - p (Alaska, USA)
I know I haven't replied in quite some time but the diligence of the YANA staff compels me to write. So I will be brief. PSA: Undetectable. Urinary and other symptoms: About the same as last post.
I am retired since my last post and moved some 4,000 miles away from my career location - that rationalizes some of the delay in responding. Almost 8 years have gone by since my diagnosis.
I continue to greet every morning with a cup of coffee, bottle of water and a 45 min. bicycle ride before I start my day.
The best lesson I learned from this website is to take control of your life, don't necessarily settle for the first opinion, and assemble your team.
BTW: I'm still a big advocate of pomegranate!
Just a short update to stay current. I don't think much about the treatment I went through these days. I'm down to one PSA test a year and it has remained undetectable! Happily retired in the Arizona Desert. Too hot now for my bicycle as I'm still not used to the heat after 28 years in Alaska. Can't wait to get started again in a few weeks when there will be 9 months of great weather. Keeping my weight down, eating healthy and I rarely go out to eat. A few beers or some red wine every day. Right now, I can just say "life is great"!
Short update...On October 3rd, I passed the 10 year mark since diagnosis! Weight is down drastically since I finished Lupron 7 years ago. Attribute that to bicycle riding several times a week. I am retired now and life is great!
Pat's e-mail address is: patrickpriestley AT yahoo.com (replace "AT" with "@")
NOTE: Pat has not updated his story for more than 15 months, so you may not receive any response from him.