Joyless to Joy
On November 9, 2021 I heard the words you proved positive for Prostate Cancer. Me being me, I always assume it will be bad news so I am pre-prepared. I did not blink an eye and just looked forward saying. I figured that. As I sat there and my doctor began his experience with the disease and all the options to follow, my mind
Too much information to digest
There were too many numbers that I digested at that moment. All that stuck was surgery. Then I was told I could also go the radiation route. So I went to the Radiation doctor for his advice. I then went for a second opinion and was told MY case was a 50/50 choice. After I saw the radiation Dr. he said I would need 27 sessions of radiation 5 days a week in a row for 6 weeks
Wait..now.. BLADDER CANCER?
I opted for the surgery. On March 2, 2021 I had my Prostate taken out. The entire procedure was not at all a horrible experience. In 1 day out the next. Catheter for a week that was easy to adapt to. Only sore a few days. One week later March 9, 2021, went for the removal of the catheter. Then was told surgery went well, BUT the doctor saw something suspicious so took a biopsy of my Bladder. Now told I had Bladder Cancer. I was so taken back my head was spinning. HOW I asked, with all the Nuclear MRIs, X Rays and all the various other tests was it at all possible to NOT see this?! I was coldly told that they were not looking at my Bladder. So when asked what next?
So what NEXT? Unimaginable treatments..
I was informed I would probably have to go for a Cystoscopy for the rest of my life. Okay, WHAT is that I asked? In very short terms I was informed that a camera would need to be inserted into MY penis up to my bladder to see any Cancer that was there. I could not envision this yet I kept on trudging forward to do whatever needed to be done. My 1st Cystoscopy was nothing at all short of excruciating!
It turns out the passage leading to my bladder was extremely small which is rare. The doctor could NOT even get into the opening as it was so small. He directed the nurse to get a metal rod that he then proceeded to insert into my penis! I screamed in pain with my both hands covering my mouth to stifle the sounds. He then placed the camera in me and I shook like a crazed dog. It was by far the greatest pain I have had to endure to date.
The treatment road was painful to say the least
When it was over I was then told that there would be a six-week process where BCG treatments would be injected thru another catheter into my bladder. The 1st injection did not go well. The nurse was unable to gain entry with the catheter. She left the room and spoke with my Dr. who originally diagnosed me. He then asked, "WHAT SIZE catheter she was using, then told her to get a MUCH smaller one". He actually performed the 1st of 6 shots and it was bearable. The remaining 5 were still uncomfortable but the nurse was very consoling. After a six-week period, I was to have another cystoscopy. I switched doctors and was so relieved to get through it this time with simply a groan.
Here to say I MADE IT!
As of August 9, 2021 I was Cancer Free and elated! I just went the other day for my 6 month follow up and thankfully, I am still in the clear. I would love to tell ANY man that is afflicted with this disease that it is of the utmost importance to follow thru with what medical advice you are given.
Word of Advice...
However one MUST have faith and trust in the doctor that is caring for you. This is essential for one's healing and getting their life back on track. Do NOT allow others to dissuade you! Attend to the items suggested by the medical staff and believe THEY are there for YOU. ASK all + any questions so that you are fully aware of ALL pros + cons. Have Faith as well as Strength and you will be fine.???
Help others feel a little less alone
Do friends and family ask about your bladder cancer?