Scott Goodman, a fellow prostate cancer survivor, has agreed to occasionally post on the blog. Scott, at the age of 45 years, was diagnosed with prostate cancer. In two short years, he has been diagnosed, undergone surgery, taken Ketoconazole with Prednisone and now finds himself starting chemotherapy. Scott bravely has agreed to chronicle his journey with the hope that it will help the rest of us on our journey with advanced prostate cancer.
I look forward to his future reports and pray that Scott and his family have a long journey. Scott, thank you for being so brave and sharing your personal experiences and feelings with us. – Joel
A new journey begins for me on Thursday. It has been a little over two years since I was diagnosed with prostate cancer. It all seems so surreal.
First, there was a random psa test given to me as a part of my quarterly blood work for diabetes. I had the diabetes well under control and felt great. I was enjoying life, playing golf, gardening and fishing. Summer weekends were spent toting my kids around the lake on kneeboards. Life was good.
Then I received the news of an elevated psa. My doc at the time said, “Don’t worry it is not very high. It is probably an infection.” My psa was 7.5. A repeat psa test showed the psa at 10.5. My head started to spin. At that time, I did not know what a psa test was or even what a prostate was for that matter. I was referred to the urologist for the dreaded DRE. At 45 years old, I thought I would not have to be in this position, literally, for a few more years.
My Urologist is an ex navy man who thankfully talks direct and does not sugar coat anything. After the DRE he felt a nodule and scheduled me for a biopsy. He called me on my 45th birthday and gave me the news. “You have prostate cancer and I need to see you right away.”
We decided to have surgery, I say we because every member of your family goes through the process with you. They may not feel the pain, the embarrassment, or the other vast array of emotions, but they do feel their own set of emotions. We elected to go with Dr C. because I felt comfortable with him. I trusted him then and I trust him now. I had robotic surgery on December 6th, 2006 and my psa a month later was .14.
I then went on and started hormone therapy. In the spring, I also started a course of radiation that lasted for eight weeks. My psa settled around .25 for a good year or so.
This last spring my psa started to rise! Then it doubled and kept on doubling every month! Dr C suggested I should go see an oncologist. We made an appointment at Duke and met with Dr R. She said she needed to get a feel for my cancer and to come back and see her again in three months.
Both of my Dr.’s have always taken the time to answer all of my questions and add their support. I have never felt rushed once they got in the room. Because my psa continued to rise, I started taking Ketoconazole with Prednisone. Unfortunately, it totally wiped me out and actually put in the hospital.
Dr C. said it was time to consider chemo and asked me to meet again with the oncologists. So, after all I did here I am. I start my first chemo treatment on Thursday.
I would like to thank all of you that have paved the way for the rest of us. Your stories have been an inspiration. I hope that my diary moving forward will help someone else get through this.