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Moved my PSA Appointment

lighterwood67's picture
lighterwood67
Posts: 209
Joined: Feb 2018

 I had to change my appointment from August 3 to today.   The surgeon who took my prostate out, pretty much told me what I already knew.  My PSA is undetectable. I will go back to see him in October and have another PSA test. If that one is undetectable, they will enroll me into a Survivorship Program. Also, I got invited to a Levine Cancer Institute's Cancer Survivors Day.  I do not know if I made the right decision, but at this moment I feel that I did.  Time will tell my story.  As so many of you have shared yours.  I am still here;  I am still me; I am different, but still the same.  

Grinder
Posts: 441
Joined: Mar 2017

I will repeat something RobLee said...

If your PSA has been undectectable and if it ever goes up, its because a cancer cell metastasized before your prostatectomy. No curative treatment could have caught that bandit once it got away. 

Any treatments employed to get it after it metastasized would be the same no matter how you treated the prostate itself.

So yes... you made the right decision.

hewhositsoncushions
Posts: 279
Joined: Mar 2017

Which is why I get confused and gloomy about the different messages on occasion.

One one hand the above, I see if it rises it pre-metastasised (i.e. you are screwed) on the other hand I get told 30% of RP fails and HT/SRT usually mops up the mess so don't worry.

I hate the uncertainty more than the disease.

Having a bad day in case you were wondering :)

H

lighterwood67's picture
lighterwood67
Posts: 209
Joined: Feb 2018

Well, I hope your day gets better.  I am very aware of the fact that this cancer has many faces and many approaches to blunt or stop its advance.  And you are right, the uncertainity weighs on us.  With that said, I am having a wonderful day and I am looking forward to going camping with my wife and dog in August.  So hang in there.  Better days are coming.

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3307
Joined: May 2012

Hewho,

A few bedrock PCa tenets:

PSA rising above .2 (and then confirmed) following RP indicates relapse.  The only way relapse can happen is for metastasis to have occured prior to the RP.  

The failure rate from RP (at least in the US), in which "failure" is defined as relapse of the cancer after RP was employeed reasonably and per established treatment guideliness, is way less than 30%.

RT following failure of RP is frequently curative, but not always so

These clinical situations are the current state of affairs in 2018.  It does not seem to me that they are contradictory or inherently very confusing.

But yes, the situation for each man does forever contain uncertainty.

max

Clevelandguy
Posts: 460
Joined: Jun 2015

Hi All,

One thing I have learned is to take it one PSA test at a time and learn to fight the battle when & if it arises in the future.  If you keep thinking about it,  it will drive you crazy.  It's been almost 5 years since my RP Davinci style with undetectable psa.  You take your best shot first and like you say do things to mop up the bandit later on if you need to.  A return is always on my mind but mentally I have to put it in the background and live a normal life.  Worry, worry, worry gets you no where.

Dave 3+4

lighterwood67's picture
lighterwood67
Posts: 209
Joined: Feb 2018

That's right.  Live in the present.  In this moment of time.  My wife always tells me that.

Grinder
Posts: 441
Joined: Mar 2017

When I said "no curative treatment could gave caught that" I was referring to LWs radical prostatectomy as opposed to other treatments when the prostate was still intact. If there was metastasis after the prostate was removed, it's because it escaped before treatment.

That in NO way suggested that there are not effective treatments once the cancer metastasized.

It ONLY suggests that it DID NOT MATTER what treatment was employed AT THE TIME to neutralize the gland itself since the "bandit" has already escaped.

I apologize for not being more clear. The point of my comment was simply that LW made the right decision regardless of the outcome.

One thing about cancer, it helps you realize how valuable every day is. Dont waste a single one worrying about something you cannot change, and charge head on into those things you can change.

There's an irony there... If God told me "Grinder... you have one year left to live", and if I spend it fretting over what few days I have left, I may as well die tomorrow. Better to make those last 365 days count for something.

In a way, God is saying JUST THAT to ALL of us... "Grinder, you have [?] days left to live... make the most of them".

VascodaGama's picture
VascodaGama
Posts: 3029
Joined: Nov 2010

Congratulations for the good results. I do not know the meaning of your "... right decision ..." but the results prove it to be right. Now is time to celebrate and you doing it right again in going camping. Best wishes for more good news in October.

VG

lighterwood67's picture
lighterwood67
Posts: 209
Joined: Feb 2018

All I meant by that is that there were so many options out there to blunt or stop the advance of PC.  My wife and I weighed out the options based on what the RP and RO folks told us to include side effects of each.  We chose the RP option.  We have no regrets.  My intent on my post was not to stir the pot on the subject or confusion.  Thanks for the kind words.  We will go camping and we will go and party with the Cancer Survivors at Levine.  You are right, the results speak for themselves.  Smile, I am.

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3307
Joined: May 2012

I have understood you all along, Lighter. All of your observations have been sound and well-reasoned.

As has been mentioned many times here, PCa in a way is more confusing than many other types of cancers since there are numerous treatment options, all reasonable.  Some of us at times (very reasonably and understandably) tend to "lawyer up" in language, to avoid any trace of possible confusion, almost as if we were writing a legal contract or something.  But what we all do is submit general themes and truths; how any of this is applied to any given guy is between that guy and his doctors.  You any your doctor (in the language of SC) done good

max

jeffman
Posts: 25
Joined: Oct 2017

So far,after 10 months, my follow ups show a negligeable PSA. That's good. Still dealing with minor incontinence issues but it's doable. The bottom line is that I was lucky to have been diagnosed when i was (hadn't had a physical in 46 years and the horse was dangerously close to leaving the barn)

For now I accept my situation and work each day to deal with it. I'm 65 and recently retired and have an understanding wife. I know that, at some point, things might change If they do then I'll deal with it at that time.

No matter what happens , or when , even if cancer comes back for a visit I'll know that ,even if it ends up killing me-it will never have beat me.

SubDenis's picture
SubDenis
Posts: 130
Joined: Jul 2017

I am six months post-HDR-BT and feel comfortable with my choice.  I did my due diligence, made my choice, and now am monitoring the PSA countdown.  If the cancer was not eliminated, I will discern the next steps and move forward.  Looking back does no good for anyone.  Congrats.  

 

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3307
Joined: May 2012

All true and well said, Sub.

"For every system, have a backup"  -- a core notion in the submarine community.

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