Friday, July 29, 2005

More prostate fun…

I suspected something was up when I saw my proctologist’s phone number on the Caller ID recorder, twice, but no message had been left on the answering machine. “Sorry, but your biopsy results were positive” is not a message one would normally leave on an answering machine. The doctor’s office and I played telephone tag for a day and a half before we finally linked up this afternoon. I received the news that I’m officially one of the “1 in 6 men who will contract Prostate cancer in their lifetime.” Lucky me.

What can you say? More importantly, what can you do? My doctor is on vacation at the moment (one of his partners called me with the news) and won’t be back until next week. Then we’re going to have a meeting and I’ll learn my options. Will it be treatment; chemo or radiation, or will it be surgery? Will it be “watchful waiting”? Who knows? We’ll find out…

Good news. Prostate cancer is, normally, very slow growing. Bad news. Out of the 14 biopsy threads taken in this latest set of tests, 4 of them were positive. This is nearly 30% of the samples taken. Another biopsy I took less than a year ago was completely negative. So, 0% to 30% in less than a year. I’m not comforted…

Good news. The doctor who spoke with me today told me that my “Gleason Score” is a “6” and that’s “good”. Bad news. I did a little research on the Internet today and find that a “6” is NOT good – its just one step below “aggressive” in tumor growth. Is this doctor just blowing smoke up my ass? Maybe I’m just misinterpreting the web site.

Good news. The cure rate for this type of cancer, if caught early enough, is supposedly nearly 100%. Bad news. Both my father and his mother died of cancer…

So, we’ll see. 95% of me thinks that everything is fine, that I’ll have some interesting medical experiences over the next several months that I’ll share with you on this blog and then it will be over. The other 5% of me is thinking “Oh God, Oh God, Oh God…”

In an earlier posting, I had poked fun at my proctologist for wanting to do another, and more thorough, biopsy. It goes without saying that I am now, more than ever, very grateful for his vigilance.

Stay tuned…

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