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Diagnosed 1 week ago.

Posts: 13
Joined: Oct 2011

Following rising PSAs topping out at 5.6, I had my 1st biopsy, which revealed 2 ot of 12 cores containing 4+4=8 GS cancers at 20%--30% respectively. The two cancerous cores are side-by-side.

I will be 70 yrs old on Thanksgiving day 2011 and in incredibly good health, otherwise.

When I had my biopsy, I had hoped the results would show no cancer, and if it had to be cancer, that the GS would be a 6. My hope was that I could watchful wait, because of my age and die from something else and take the PCa to my grave. However, with a GS 8, that doesn't seem like a cool thing to concider.

So here I am, in need of love and encouragement, and mostly feedback from this great community of people faced with or who have gone through all of this before me. I have/am reading EVERYTHING almost every waking moment.

There are no easy answers or treatments; they all rip a man at the heart of who he is. I swing between hope to despare. I know I have to decide, but don't want to.

I have an appointment with a radiation oncologist in a couple weeks. My thinking is that because I will be 70 yrs old very soon, that external radiation and brachytherapy with some ADT might be the optimum approach. Am I on the right track here?

I desire all your help, all your feedback, and all your experience. I feel very needy right now.

Thanks all

lewvino's picture
Posts: 1010
Joined: May 2009

So sorry to read about your diagnosis. It does sound though that you have allready started on the education part of this cancer and I encourage you to continue!

Yes the news of the "C" word can definetely play havoc with your emotions.
I was diagnosed at age 54 with a Gleason 7. I had the Davinci robotic surgery and am doing well two years post surgery.

I would encourage you to send your slides for a second opinion on the Gleason 8 to be sure.
Especially since it was only 2 or the 12 cores.

Get that second reading and then continue with your research on the best way to fight this!

lewvino (larry)

Kongo's picture
Posts: 1166
Joined: Mar 2010

So sorry to read of your diagnosis. All of us who have received a prostate cancer diagnosis are all initially shocked, confused, scared, and worried about mortality. The only way I know to address these emotions is to learn everything you can about prostate cancer in general and your own particular situation in in great detail.

You may well be right that some form of radiation in conjunction with hormone treatment might be an appropriate approach but it's probably too early to come to that conclusion. As Larry suggested, please get a second opionion on your pathology report although many radiation oncologists will do this for you before starting treatment. You may wish to check with the office of the oncologist where your appointment is scheduled to see if they do this. If not, you can have your slides sent to a number of highly rated labs in the United States for a second opinion.

I would also encourage you to consider consulting with more than one specialist. I consulted with six before making a decision. Each time I met with one of the doctors I learned more about prostate cancer and got a better perspective on the options available to me.

When you do attend your appointment, consider taking a spouse, close friend, or family member who can take notes and listen. Four ears are better than two in these situations and you will forget some of what you are told and it is helpful to get the perspective of someone you trust.

Good luck in your journey.


VascodaGama's picture
Posts: 3407
Joined: Nov 2010


I think you are on the good track. The protocol you mention is aggressive enough to handle the problem and may provide a cure. Surgery is recommended if the cancer is assumed and diagnosed as contained, to which a conclusion is difficult to obtain just through traditional image status.
I would recommend you to read about risks and side effects of the treatments. These always superimpose in mixed protocols.

Some guys just start with the palliative ADT before RT or RP, and verify how the cancer responds to low levels of testosterone. It could be a choice to care of your case alone. Nevertheless, healthy status is more for an aggressive approach and it does well to Gleason 8 guys.

Gleason grade 4 is the “baddy” in your case, but you will find a way in dealing with the bandit. I join the above survivors’ recommendations in obtaining second opinions. Make a long list of questions and compare the answers from each doctor.

A good book to understand your status is;
“A Primer on Prostate Cancer, The Empowered Patient’s Guide” by Dr. Stephen Strum and Donna Pogliano; which explains well the whole process of diagnosis.

Wishing you find a satisfying answer.


Posts: 13
Joined: Oct 2011

Larry, Kongo, and VGama,

Thanks so much for your encouragement and well wishes. I do have a second opinion coming in on the biopsy from Bostwick lab. I am reading everthing I can (thanks for the recommendations). I look forward to posting here regarding my journey, which started with shock and fear, and a week later is turning into determination and wanting to maximize my outcome with this new "visitor."

I have an awesome wife who is a HUGE supporter and encourager. I have a wonderful small church family, and now you all. Thanks for being here; it is so good to hear feedback from you

Thanks again for the words of wisdom and the well wishes--so appreciated and welcomed.


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