Within the last month, December 2103, I have been diagnosed with Prostate Cancer, with metastasis to my lymph nodes and bones.~~~~ Good lawd help Me!
I set up this blog for the discussion, education and sharing of information and testimonies about the disease Called; Adenocarcinoma, which is a cancer that develops in glands, for this particular blog we will narrow it to Prostate Adenocarcinoma which is Cancer of the Prostate Gland found in men.
I have never done anything like this and I already see where it will become embarrassing to me to reveal private stuff of mine and my family’s in the hopes of saving lives and/or extending lives.
I launch this blog of mine this day January 6th on the 44th anniversary of my reporting to the Induction Station in Seattle, Washington to be shipped to my first day of Basic Training in The United States Army ~~~44 years later ~~this thang rears its ugly head,.
The US Veterans Administration has declared that any service in the Viet Nam Theater is “Presumptive” meaning, anyone who served in Viet Nam has been exposed to Agent Orange if we do not die from anything else, we will succumb to some form of cancer.
From a routine yearly check up at The Veterans Hospital’s Urology Clinic, my Urologist (Dr. Derrick Mobley) felt what he thought to be physical changes in my prostate gland from his rectal digital examination. He ordered a Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) blood test.
From here I am going to take you on the journey of my life from the first knowledge that I now had Prostate Cancer.
There are many Prostate Websites out there offering information and I encourage everyone to become familiar with them, this blog is just my journey, not meant to serve as a resource of facts.
Even though I am a retired Registered Nurse does not mean I know everything, I have forgotten more than I know right now about the situation.
So for right now I am going to approach this is from this one man’s prospective of what you might or could expect in how and why things are recommended, done, with each procedure, how it was performed, for what reason and how it felt.
You will hear in my voice lots of questions, uncertainty, and fear, and anger!
I will start my journey following this opening, if you have any experience with this, please add to the discussions;
Number One~ it gives men, our families and friends a place to vent things they may have never spoken of or know about in their own personal journey with family and friends.
My doctor and I believe I contracted this through my exposure to a toxic defoliant widely used in Viet Nam called.
Please look at my thread, My Husband Died, in the off topic forum.
I have been through this, as my husband died from prostate cancer. He was fine, low P.S.A., and then it suddenly sky rocketed. His first doctor gave him 3 months to live. We were able to stretch that to 3 3/4 years.
The most important thing we found is to understand that in a study, The median is the middle number, It is the average of everyone in the study. The numbers don't show the extremes- The Outliers. There is HOPE. Find the Doctors of the Outliers who live the longest. I researched and found an Outlier doctor who is also an outlier prostate survivor. His cancer was a Gleason 10, and about at the same stage as yours. He beat his own cancer, and 14 years out, is running marathons. He is a world class researcher, and works with doctors around the world.
Please p.m. me if you want more information. If I can make a difference for you, I've passed the hope and strategy on.
My dad was in the Navy during Vietnam. He died January 6, 2006 from prostate cancer. Supposedly even the Navy guys got exposed to something. He did however live for 11 years after being diagnosed.
I sincerely hope that you can beat this. If they offer you a treatment, take it. Also, look into alternative body purifiers like kelp as I think this is what helped my dad live so long. He was originally only given a few months to live.
as if that era and area wasn't tragic enough.
my dh is a Vietnam vet as well and has chronic lymphocetic leukemia. he's been fighting it since 05 but overall has a great quality of life and is happily retired.
preacher your dx is similar to mine--though I lack a prostate lol!
I had an apocrine adenocarcinoma which is now neuro endocrine.
I will keep you in my prayers.
As a PSA to all the vets and wives of vets who have cancer, especially Viet Nam vets. PLEASE be sure to get this rated as service connected. Start the process NOW!!!!
If, God forbid, this cancer proves to be terminal, if it is documented as service connected, the widow should qualify for Dependents Indemnity Compensation. I'm not sure what the rate is (I'm grandfathered in under the old system) but I believe it's somewhere around $1300/month now.
I just helped my hairdresser qualify for it and it has prevented her from losing her home. The hardest part was getting the documentation of places, dates, etc. He was SF, so she was able to get up with his old buddies, but it would have been so much easier if it'd been done earlier.
I'm a member of the Gold Star Wives, and I can't tell you how many times a member has written in trying to help a widow get DIC. Husband has passed, and she's having so much trouble finding information. The time to do the documentation is NOW! Please, this can mean so much to the families.
I was fortunate (?) in that my husband died on active duty, so I didn't have to mess with all the paperwork. He had 3 tours in Viet Nam and had HUGE lumps all over his body, I'm sure they would have turned cancerous had he lived long enough.
An older friend was diagnosed with this a year ago, was caught early, given a choice of surgery or radiation, went for the radiation beads.
The side effects were tough for a few months, but he is fine now.
He was not in the military, has never been anywhere else than around here.
I think being a man and older is the main criteria for this kind of cancer.
I think being a man and older is the main criteria for this kind of cancer.
It is. If you look into these presumptive Vietnam-related illnesses (which also include DM2 and heart disease), the point is that the person doesn't have to prove either exposure or that the disease was actually caused by the agent. They just need to have the disease, and have been somewhere where they could, conceivably, have been exposed.
There is no science that shows the Agent Orange was causal to the presumptive illnesses. It's partly statistical (association) and partly political.
That doesn't make it a bad thing. The government is offering it, so certainly any vet who qualifies should take what's on offer. Whether they would've developed prostate cancer or heart disease anyways is beside the point, since the government isn't claiming causation.
The trouble with 2-4-5-T, agent orange, is not that it is bad for anyone when used properly, as it was for decades in many places as brush and tree control.
Many highline companies in the USA and Canada used it without any harmful effects.
Farms and ranches used it for brush control without problems to those spraying or living and working where it was sprayed.
The reason it may have caused some illness then or later when used in Vietnam was because of misuse and overuse.
The difference was, spraying trees and brush once every ten years for control, as it was licensed for, or spraying it weeks apart, repeatedly, on top of soldiers, as it seems to have been used?
Well, even salt will poison you if you eat too much of it.
I think that over/misuse is why the veteran's administration is accepting agent orange exposure as a valid reason for some illnesses later.
PSA is a poor indicator of prostate cancer. It is a good indicator of prostate enlargement. That enlargement may be benign or malignant.
By autopsy, 70% of men over 70 have prostate cancer. 80% of men over 80 have it. But very few die from it. They die of strokes, heart attacks, accidents, etc. My FIL died of prostate cancer but it was several years after he was diagnosed. He was 81 at the time of his death.
The Agent Orange connection is tenuous by all that I've read about it. I got involved in some of the claims back in the '80s when I was working with insurance companies. The amount of "junk science" that swirled about the issue was truly impressive. I've not followed the issue closely so I don't know if the science is any better or not.
I don't wish this on anyone but it's one of those things that comes with being male.
You have beautiful children!
A friend of mine (and a race horse breeder) had a radical prostectomy , I misspelled that, about 10 years ago. The surgeon who perfected the operation to avoid cutting nerves did the operation. His PSA was high, but his doctors told him not to worry. He worried, and was glad he'd had his prostate gland removed.
While many men do live out their lives with prostate cancer, and die in their 80s and 90s, some do not. While my father lived to be 91 yoa with high PSA #s, (he was always getting his prostate checked), others, like my uncle (not blood related) in Charleston developed prostate cancer in his 50s and did not live long. So read all the literature, consult with all the doctors, read all the websites where people who've been through this discuss the pros and cons, and then decide how you want to treat it. I hope you live to be 91 yoa too.
My father also has prostate cancer and was a Vietnam Vet. I will be praying for you and your family! He was diagnosed 12 years ago, and given 18 months to live. We found a great doctor and he had the seed implants. Those worked for a long time, now he has been through several chemotherapies, hormone treatments, case studies, and new drugs. New drugs are being approved like crazy for this and the research is very encouraging. Do get with the VA and get everything you can from them. Many of Dad's drugs were given to him for free, he was able to get full disability after the treatments left him too weak to continue working, and Mom will be able to retain some of those benefits. I am not sure of all the details, but you have earned these benefits due to your courageous service so make sure you sign up! I will be reading your blog!
My father has prostate cancer. He is going on 13 years since diagnosis. He has metz in his bones but thus far is holding his own. His PSA is rising and he has become resistant to the hormone suppressant therapy and now on a new kind of med. He has never done chemo, not sure if that will be an option for him and he says he is not interested. I think he does not realize that it does not make people as sick as it used to - or at least they have better control over the side effects.
When he was first diagnosed, it was graded an aggressive cancer. He retired early figuring he was going to die and here he is. We know that he could suddenly have it take off and that could be the end but so far, so (relatively) good.
I knew there were a lot of testimonies on this! As I said, even being a RN I did not know what I know now about the disease. ~~~ and EACH AND EVERYONE of you have so helped me with your comments...and I so feel for y'all who have lost someone to tis, especially if they served!
I say thank you to those fellas and their families who went through it with them.
I can feel the ~~` love, pain and desire to voice your experience ~~~
As you and your stories have helped me, whether encouragement or a healthy fear to stay the course and be active in my care
YOU CAN HELP OTHERS!!!
Please, please go to my blog and tell your story there, find any page you like and add your comments...if it were me and I either had it or succumbed from it ~~~
I would want you to pass it on to save some of my brothers in arms or any fella that might not know what you know and help educate families and friends ~~~
Did I make sense there?
You are not through with it just because your loved one has passed, matter fact in my book ~~ you owe it to the rest of the world to tell your story which might make a difference in someone else's world.
I have just posted the results of my first lab test after starting the regimen of HRT ~~`go check it out...
I so thank each and everyone of you, really, hand to God, your words and sentiments are reassuring...