Yr Fthfl Srvnt has cancer, but I don’t think it’s a death-sentence.
It’s prostate-cancer, which I’m told is easily treated.
I’m also told men my age (I’m 71) usually develop prostate-cancer, and it’s so slow-growing it’s left untreated — only monitored.
I also know a guy slightly older than me who had the same surgery I was suggested: removal of the prostate. He’s fine; you’d never know.
My diagnosis was by Urology Associates of Rochester
(NY), who I’ve been seeing about 25 years.
During that time they’ve been monitoring my PSA level (prostate-specific-antigen; the amount in one’s blood), which has always been highish. High PSA can indicate prostate-cancer.
An in-office biopsy was done years ago, and indicated nothing. But the in-office biopsy is not very extensive. It doesn’t take many samples.
A few years later we did a full “saturated” biopsy — many more samples. A saturated biopsy is done as an outpatient procedure in a hospital involving anesthesia.
This years-ago saturated biopsy also indicated nothing.
My most recent PSA assessment did a gigantic jump, so another saturated biopsy was ordered.
This time they discovered cancer cells.Alarums-alarums!
The dreaded “C”-word.
I was no longer being monitored. I was now a cancer-patient.
My wife’s brother, who lives in FL, and who was two years older than my wife — who died over three years ago — took this diagnosis as a reason to visit, which he was planning to do anyway.
He would accompany me to Urology Associates of Rochester to discuss treatment options.
We endured a long two-hour sales-pitch detailing various past treatments over the years.
My father also had prostate-cancer, which I wasn’t aware of, because I was out on my own by that time, and my father and I were somewhat estranged.
Apparently his prostate-cancer was treated with radiation,
which is what they were doing at that time.
I was told radiation was good for about 10 years, and I said I expected to be around longer than that.
How long my father had prostate-cancer I don’t know, but he died of Parkinson’s Disease.
Treatment shifted back to removing the prostate, I guess.
First it was done with a gigantic incision.
Removal of the prostate takes out part of the urinary tract.
It’s repaired by stretching the remaining tubes, and stitching things back together.
The same procedure is now done robotically,
The size of the incision is dramatically reduced, and stitching together the urinary tubes can be done with many more stitches, which promote faster and more reliable healing.
“Guided imagery,” my brother-in-law called it. A long sales-pitch that led to the doctor buying a Ferrari.
That’s probably not the case, but the doctor who long-ago did my open-heart surgery, that repaired the reason I had a stroke, drove a Ferrari.
But it sounded like prostate removal made more sense if I expected to be around a while.
Who knows, I could be killed by a bus, which always strikes me as fatuous
since I drove bus.So prostate removal is what we’re gonna do.
And I hope that keeps me alive a while.
I’m not depressed or suicidal.
But I feel like I’m just marking time until my death.
If it happens, so what!
I feel like my life ended when my beloved wife died. I still miss her immensely,
but -a) I have a dog that wants me around, and -b) I don’t want to miss anything, like Trump blustering, or the Tea-Baggers kowtowing, or the honkies shooting all-and-sundry in defense of the Second Amendment.• My wife of over 44 years died of cancer April 17th, 2012. I miss her dearly.
• I had a stroke October 26th, 1993, from which I pretty much recovered.
• For 16&1/2 years (1977-1993) I drove transit bus for Regional Transit Service (RTS) in Rochester, NY, a public employer, the transit-bus operator in Rochester and environs. My stroke ended that. I retired on medical-disability.