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ksaves2

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Whoa, Just got home from the hospital. I guess you could say I was lucky in that I had a low level elevated PSA in October, treated with antibiotics to no avail for presumed infection. Fractionated PSA then showed a 50% chance of malignancy.

Had a trans rectal needle biopsy which is ultrasound guided and pain free. 15 minute procedure once one is lying on their side on the table. I ended up with 2 cores out of 12
with the lowest grade of prostate cancer Gleeson 6. Was seen in only 5% of the tissue in the
affected cores. Guys shouldn't be afraid of a prostate biopsy in this day and age.

Since I'm 60 (and that's young) I opted for a robotic prostatectomy. I've known people who are much younger like the actor Ben Stiller who underwent the same procedure.

Radiation can be done but one's pelvis gets really fried and scarred. If a surgeon has to go back in down the road for say colon surgery, it becomes very harder to do.

If one is closer to the end of their lifespan, satisfactory cures can be had with radiation hence I went with robotic surgery. If I was 75 or in my 80's I'd go that route.

25 years ago, open surgery was a 6 to 10 day bloody affair but with the da Vinci robot, the surgery is accomplished through 5 or 6 holes in the abdomen.

I was sent home with a Foley catheter for a week and pain pills today after an over night stay. Good gosh how times have changed to our advantage. I should do well so I can fly more rockets. I pointed out to my surgeon that fact and she smiled and shook her head in
the affirmative.
Kurt Savegnago
 
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K'Tesh

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Sounds like a positive outcome for a potentially seriously scary situation. Thanks for passing that along. It may help others get themselves checked out, and possible problems eliminated before they're serious problems.

God Bless!
Jim
 

fyrwrxz

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Kurt- positive vibes your way and thanks for sharing. A lot of us old dogs forget our 'bulletproof' days are over and some nasty little creepies can take us out if we don't pay attention. I for one am going to get checked out as I'm a bit older than you and now kinda get my wife's concerns. Be well, my friend, and drill some holes in the sky when you're recovered enough. Straight smoke and good chutes!
 

ksaves2

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Sounds like a positive outcome for a potentially seriously scary situation. Thanks for passing that along. It may help others get themselves checked out, and possible problems eliminated before they're serious problems.

God Bless!
Jim
Yeah, That's why I mentioned it. The initial biopsy was a piece o' cake 15 minutes in and out and completely
painless after a teeny tiny sting of the lidocaine. Really much easier than an L2 written test.
Like I said, the robotically assisted operation sure beats the old-fashioned open one where they blasted through
one's bladder from above and one ended up with catheter coming out below and a suprapubic tube coming out
from above. Stuck with two bags instead of one besides the long hospital stay. If the lower catheter got
plugged with clots, the upper tube provided pressure relief so the triple layer bladder closure didn't
rip apart. Kurt
 

The_Lone_Beagle

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Wow, that sounds scary! It does sound like you have had a great outcome...we'll keep our fingers crossed over here. Good luck!
 

Worsaer

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Hey Kurt, sorry to hear you had to go through the ordeal, but it does sound like you're headed in the right direction. You're right, times have changed.

Take care, and build something while you're healing up!

-B
 

Mugs914

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Hi Kurt, so glad you are going to be okay! Prayers for you and your family...
 

Onebadhawk

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I'm sure glad you're ok Kurt...
I always say,, going to the doc and having him tell you something bad isn't the end of the world these days...
Being afraid of the doc and not going to him to be checked can be.........

Time will pass Kurt...
Feel better man...

Teddy
 

hobie1dog

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I am 60 as well. Hope you are back flying soon.
 

ksaves2

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Thanks all for the well wishes. Sitting in bed with an ice bag where, "The Sun don't shine!" Feels pretty good mind you but I developed a bit of swelling "you know where"
which I should have expected. I spent a lot of time yesterday getting some gifts ready and though I followed the surgeons instructions by not lifting more than 10lbs,
(actually I wasn't doing more than 2 lbs.) going up and down the steps to the basement probably didn't help. Shoot, I felt fine and still feel fine except for the swelling
between the legs! No! It's not the good kind!
I'm in the medical trade and witnessed how this was done 34 years ago. Being able to go home the day after and recover at home with "my little buddy" the foley
catheter is really something. Though I've never entertained or had a catheter before, I have a good idea how to deal with them. Number one: Don't trip over it.
Number two: Don't trip over it and rip it out traumatically! Number three: Glance at the bag to reassure ones self that even though you feel like you gotta pee, the pee is draining out and you can think of "other things". Number four: Strain relief on the catheter. They got a nice do-hickey clip glued to my thigh that's doing a yeoman job in that department. The duct tape and the elastic bands of yore didn't quite do as well according to my ex-nurse wife. Number Five: One can pee uphill to a certain degree but best to keep the bag lower than oneself. Number six: One can shower with "their little buddy" and the handholds in the shower are perfect to hang a foley bag on while soaping up and rinsing.
Number seven: The ladies will like this one. No more peeing all over the toilet seat! Just hold the bag over and open the valve! It empties so much faster than I ever could do before!!
So, I'm amazed at how good I feel 3 days out from the robotic prostatectomy. If I was older and retired, I would have considered radiation therapy as the cure rates are comparable. Surgery should leave my pelvis in better shape (ie. less scar tissue) in case I would develop
say a colon tumor later on that would need to be addressed by going back into my belly. I had a good screening colonoscopy at age 54 so I have four more years to go since I'm
60 for the repeat job. Surgeon said I was a "perfect A--hole!" and I admit I procrastinated on getting the colonoscopy due to an excellent family history. I fully intended to get it and did at 54 and the news was good. My PSA's had a slow drift up but went from 2.86 to 6.5 over 22 months.
I again went with the odds on that one and it turned out that treatment for infection didn't work as I thought it wouldn't and the fractionated PSA
suggested a 50% risk of a prostate cancer. The blind 12 quadrant biopsy made the diagnosis. Gleeson 6 (lowest grade) in 5% of two of the cores
with no perineural invasion. All very favorable for a surgical cure. The Pathology folks will no doubt "slice it and dice it" to have the last say.
So again, thanks for the wishes and prayers. Kurt Savegnago
 

Bat-mite

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Thanks for sharing. This information might be helpful to a whole lot of us.

Quick prayer for your full recovery!
 

JoeG

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Kurt,

Prognosis sounds good. My surgery went well also but it was either before the robotic surgery or the VA wouldn't pay for it. My recovery took a couple of weeks longer than yours will.

To All,
On a visit to my Dr. after not seeing him for several years it was his idea to do a PSA test. They had to get my records out of the archives it had been so long since my last visit. Why would I go to the Dr.? I felt fine!

The results were not good. My base PSA was 3.8 - 4.2 and had remained there since I was forty. This time it was 12.6. I did the antibiotics thing to with the expected result of no change. My gleason score was much higher than yours showing a pretty aggressive cancer and in the biopsy, cancer cells ere found in every sample.

I was 56 when this happened. That was 12 years ago. My PSA was undetectable for about 7 years after the surgery and we watched it until it rose to .4 (four tenths) and then went through some radiation and once again it is undetectable.

I had the catheter in for three weeks. The good thing about that was not needing to get up at night to pee!! Not sure it outweighed the bad part but at least it is something.

At 68 I have all the aches and pains that old folks like me have but prostate cancer has been averted once again. I have been all over the country flying rockets this year and expect to for at least a few more.

The point of this post is to get people to think about getting their PSA checked yearly after they hit 50 and earlier if you have a history of prostate cancer in your family. There are no symptoms. My prostate was not even swollen. Mine would have gone untreated without the blood test and I would have been gone a long time ago.

As the old seat belt commercial stated, "The life you save may be your own." I think it was a seat belt commercial. My memory is about shot. ;)
 

Bat-mite

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Please, folks! Get your annual physical! What you don't know CAN hurt you! And as Kurt has demonstrated, finding things early ups your chances of survival and recovery by orders of magnitude.

My cousin's wife has stage four colon cancer. Never had a colonoscopy. She's 49. Contrast that with my dad, who had a routine colonoscopy at age 80. They found a cancerous spot. A quick surgery, a few days in the hospital, and he made a full recovery and lived another ten years.
 

Steve Shannon

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It's very important also to realize that the value of the PSA alone is of very limited importance. The rate of change is more important. A high PSA can be the result of simple BPH, or several other things (including simply having sex within 72 hours before the PSA test) and the most recent advice is to not overreact. An upwardly changing PSA should be investigated.
Also, prostate cancer is not always something that must be surgically or otherwise eradicated. Often, prostate cancer is very slow moving and can simply be monitored, especially in older men. What's important is to have a very good urologist who is familiar with modern advances in prostate cancer treatment.
I have a PSA of 12. I've had four prostate biopsies in the past eight years. None of the first three have ever detected cancer. This most recent one took 18 samples. Two of the samples did detect acinar proliferation which means cells that cannot be conclusively identified as either malignant or benign. The statistical pathology of such cells is that 15% of the time they become low risk cancer and the rest of the time they remain benign. My urologist and I have agreed to simply redo the PSA test every so often and if it rises above 16 I'll have another biopsy.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

Kirk G

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Please, folks! Get your annual physical! What you don't know CAN hurt you! And as Kurt has demonstrated, finding things early ups your chances of survival and recovery by orders of magnitude.

My cousin's wife has stage four colon cancer. Never had a colonoscopy. She's 49. Contrast that with my dad, who had a routine colonoscopy at age 80. They found a cancerous spot. A quick surgery, a few days in the hospital, and he made a full recovery and lived another ten years.

And, get your PSA level checked with EVERY annual blood work.
it can and does save lives...
 

Onebadhawk

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OK guy's,,
Me too..
Except for me it's a CEA # as opposed to a PSA #...
That's the antigen marker for colon cancer..
Please keep in mind,, I was the biggest doctor chicken there ever was..
I say all the time,,
going to the doc and getting some bad news isn't the end of the world these days...
Being so passive that you never go to the doc and get checked can be....
I've been through the ringer with this...
First they removed 2/3's of my large intestine,, they told me it's no big deal,, I have plenty of extra...
Then 6 months of chemo,, that's nothing to mess with...
Then 18 months clean....
Then I got a very bad phone call one day..
It had metastasized to my liver...
They removed 60% of my liver...
Then another round of chemo,, but I wasn't able to finish the second round,, I wanted to really bad,, but the oncologist refused...

Then you live your life in 12 week cycles waiting for that next CEA #...

Oh yeah,, I know,, you can't constantly sweat the CEA test all the time..
It's not the #,, it's the trend...

I told him "you try not worrying about it"....

Teddy
 

Jarhead

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Really glad to hear all is going well for you.
My father in law was diagnosed 3 months ago. My wife and I started researching with him and made some amazing discoveries.
Pete has decided on Proton Radiation therapy, which is much less intrusive than photon radiation. Robert Marckini wrote an informative, mostly unbiased book titled "You Can Beat Prostate Cancer And You Don't Need Surgery to Do It"
While not for everyone nor widely available I thought the book was a great start to my research. He includes proper levity as well, lightening an otherwise heavy topic.
I have recommended it to all of my Freinds now and hope you give it a read. Amazon has copies for less than $5.
Research and annual physicals are the key folks. Pass that on to the men you love (and ones you may not love) nobody should go through this unarmed.
 

Incongruent

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I'm not sure if this is the right thread to put this in, but I'll take it out if someone objects. I'll also edit/remove it if the tone or my statements aren't right.

The problem with cancer is that despite all being called the same thing, every case in every person, even in the same organ is a different disease (if that's the correct term), so then identification and treatment is unique to the occasion. Thus, it is practically impossible to find a universal cure, even for an organ, as it is impossible to find a specific cure that will work against all other diseases. And I haven't read the book, but judging by the title (which probably poorly reflects the contents) it clumps all cases of prostate cancer as one disease and gives a cure accordingly, whereas because of the uniqueness of even specifically prostate cancer, one cure won't work in all cases, though I hope it works for you.

Moral: Get checkups because the diversity can make it hard to identify yourself.
 

Bat-mite

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I'm not sure if this is the right thread to put this in, but I'll take it out if someone objects. I'll also edit/remove it if the tone or my statements aren't right.

The problem with cancer is that despite all being called the same thing, every case in every person, even in the same organ is a different disease (if that's the correct term), so then identification and treatment is unique to the occasion. Thus, it is practically impossible to find a universal cure, even for an organ, as it is impossible to find a specific cure that will work against all other diseases. And I haven't read the book, but judging by the title (which probably poorly reflects the contents) it clumps all cases of prostate cancer as one disease and gives a cure accordingly, whereas because of the uniqueness of even specifically prostate cancer, one cure won't work in all cases, though I hope it works for you.

Moral: Get checkups because the diversity can make it hard to identify yourself.
I don't know enough to comment on what you wrote; however, one thing that seems very clear is that early diagnosis and treatment increase the likelihood of remission by an astounding amount. No cancer has to be terminal if it is caught early enough.

People who say, "I don't go to the doctor because I don't want them to find something wrong with me," are really saying, "I'd rather die than find out that I have a treatable illness."
 

JoeG

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I'm not sure if this is the right thread to put this in, but I'll take it out if someone objects. I'll also edit/remove it if the tone or my statements aren't right.

The problem with cancer is that despite all being called the same thing, every case in every person, even in the same organ is a different disease (if that's the correct term), so then identification and treatment is unique to the occasion. Thus, it is practically impossible to find a universal cure, even for an organ, as it is impossible to find a specific cure that will work against all other diseases. And I haven't read the book, but judging by the title (which probably poorly reflects the contents) it clumps all cases of prostate cancer as one disease and gives a cure accordingly, whereas because of the uniqueness of even specifically prostate cancer, one cure won't work in all cases, though I hope it works for you.

Moral: Get checkups because the diversity can make it hard to identify yourself.
At THE Ohio State University James Cancer Center they have a saying. "The is no routine lung cancer." I think this applies to most if not all cancers.

If interested here is a link that helps explain what they are talking about. Agreed that early detection and treatment are the key to treating and curing any disease.

https://cancer.osu.edu/blog/there-is-no-routine-lung-cancer
 

NAR29996

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I'm going through this as well, a few months further along than you are. I opted for the BrachyTherapy where radioactive seeds are implanted around the prostate. Had it done on a Wednesday, and I was back at work on Friday. I'm at 8 months now, so that's 4 half-lives of radiation,so I guess I'm functionally done with it. My 4 month checkup showed good results, and I go back in February for another checkup.

Good luck on your journey.
 

ksaves2

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It's very important also to realize that the value of the PSA alone is of very limited importance. The rate of change is more important. A high PSA can be the result of simple BPH, or several other things (including simply having sex within 72 hours before the PSA test) and the most recent advice is to not overreact. An upwardly changing PSA should be investigated.
Also, prostate cancer is not always something that must be surgically or otherwise eradicated. Often, prostate cancer is very slow moving and can simply be monitored, especially in older men. What's important is to have a very good urologist who is familiar with modern advances in prostate cancer treatment.
I have a PSA of 12. I've had four prostate biopsies in the past eight years. None of the first three have ever detected cancer. This most recent one took 18 samples. Two of the samples did detect acinar proliferation which means cells that cannot be conclusively identified as either malignant or benign. The statistical pathology of such cells is that 15% of the time they become low risk cancer and the rest of the time they remain benign. My urologist and I have agreed to simply redo the PSA test every so often and if it rises above 16 I'll have another biopsy.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
I agree whole-heartedly with Steve in that I was concerned I might fall in that group with a high PSA with negative
biopsy results. As I've mentioned subtly I'm a medico so I am a bit familiar with the stuff on this subject.
In my case I was assigned antibiotics but I didn't think would rightly do anything as I "had taken a long term
antibiotic doxycycline" for a rosacea problem. In fact I have a WildmanJr. rocket I've named the "Rosacea Rocket" after the condition that also can give one a "dry eye" syndrome. (I'm a Restasis poster boy on this and I can visually track rockets now really great after cataract surgery!)

The "free" PSA suggested the risk of malignancy so I consented to a biopsy and OMG was the biopsy a piece o' cake.

In the "olden days" it took a general anesthesia and a whole day. Nowadays, just show-up and the urologist uses an
ultrasound probe and numbs ya' up with a bit of "lidocaine". Twelve clicks out and you're out of the office in 15 minutes!! Heck, I could'a driven myself in.

I fretted like crazy since I'm in the medical field if I have a high PSA with a negative 12 quadrant biopsy. Trying to follow this is nuts as a bunch of Ivory Tower Bastards who have Poo-Poo'd this in the literature.

The bottom line is to follow it like Steve mentions over time, one might just be one of the "lucky bastards"
who has a high PSA and no malignancy present. Might have benign prostatic hypertropy but no malignancy present. I've seen old guys with PSA's up in the 30's without issues but they had multiple biopsies to prove they were O.K.

It wasn't O.K. and geez it just took an overnight stay in the hospital with a robotic surgery to
probably take care of it. Yeah, I might have some residual stress incontinence and impotence but I consider that a small price to pay to be free of the prostate cancer that was fomenting in my "loins". If I had "blown off" doing further PSA's I might have ended up entering the retirement years with a really big problem to deal with.

Kurt
 

ksaves2

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Had a little setback after catheter removal last thursday the 15th. Should'a driven straight home and hit the W.C. Wife wanted to do errands and by golly I felt fine. Let out a little pee juice pretty easily and hit a bladder spasm. Whoa Nellie but it settled down. Made it home and then the fun began. One notch below kidney stone pain and said, "We gotta get to the ER." I know the Doc and bless'em for hitting me with the Dilaudid and Zofran right off the bat while we're figuring it out. He and I both nailedt on the head with a bladder scan (Ultrasound). Man 700ml sitting in there. I was a victim of retention and didn't know it!
New foley in place with clear, straw colored pee. Going try again on Wednesday and pull the catheter out at home just before traveling to the Urologists office. I'm getting my hands on a straight cath just in case this starts up again when I pull it. Kurt
 

Onebadhawk

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Wow,, what an ordeal Kurt..
The best of luck,,
everything will go your way on Wednesday...

Teddy
 

ksaves2

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Since I'm a medico, they had me pull the cath this morning and was seen in the afternoon. I went to my office and got a straight catheter kit for insurance just the same. Well, peed in the shower after pulling and I was happy camper.
Put myself on the clock to visit the W.C. and all is well without leaking. Bloody pee and burns a bit but the burning might be gone by tomorrow and the blood in 6 weeks. I can live with that. Will check the pathology with the urologist in January. Keeping my fingers crossed and continuing to go to the chapel. Kurt
 
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