Tom Droege is a long term advanced prostate cancer survivor. He wrote this post on the Prostate Pointers Mailing List and has given me permission to reprint it. This gives a little window into his world and his battle with prostate cancer.

Hang in there Tom

“These are just my observations and have no scientific basis.

Doctors don’t tell you what to expect. They seem to live in
a world where one never talks about future pain, getting
weak, sick, or dying. There is a reason for this. If they
don’t tell you that you have pain in store, perhaps you
won’t get pain. So they don’t want to give you a guideline
for how to feel. They don’t, for example, tell you that
when your PSA gets to 1000 (or some such number) that you
will die. This would just give you permission.

1) The older you are at diagnosis, the more likely it is
that you will die from something else. This makes sense to
me. A prostate cell that starts growing at 80 is old when
he starts, and like a person at 80 he just doesn’t have the
energy to “take over the world”. On the other hand, if you
are young and vigorous, then so will be your cancer. Sigh!
Not good news for the young, but realistic.

2) The cancer uses a lot of your energy. Expect to get
weaker and weaker. While you still have energy to do so,
design your environment to minimize your energy
requirements. There is a real trade off here. If you
exercise vigorously, you will get tired. If you don’t
exercise, you will get weak. There is some compromise to be
found. In my case, I have a young man that comes in and
does things that I can’t do. I bought a push up chair and
he put it together. I bought a stair climber and he
installed it. I just sit in my push up chair and direct him
to set up the computer where I can reach it. Such things. I
had a hospital bed for a while set up next to my regular
bed. I later changed it for the push up chair which is more
practical for me. I sleep in my regular bed at night and
move to the push up chair during the day.