I’d like you to meet the surgeon

Today, Diane and I met the surgeon who will likely perform my eventual surgery. He said there would be no problem putting it off until after the Egypt in January. In fact, we talked a little about a treatment option called, “Active Surveillance,” meaning, watch and wait, and test. My kind of cancer is slow growing. If I were ten years older, the prescription (for my same diagnosis) would certainly be Active Surveillance. It would involve three or four PST (blood) tests per year, and an annual biopsy. If the PST numbers reach a high level, you schedule the surgery. The doctor said most guys who choose this option end up having the surgery after two years.

On the plus side of waiting, a guy doesn’t have to move immediately from his current normal (in the prostate issues summed up as, “Quality of Life”) to his new normal. Some guys get back to 100% of their old normal, but that not always being the case, and the cancer growing very slowly, why rush to surgery?

That’s me, creeping ever closer to age fifty nine

 

On the down side of waiting, guys in their 50’s have a better recovery rate than guys in their 60’s. I’m 58. I think he was suggesting it would be smart to cash in my “50’s decade recovery card” before it expires.

So where does that put me? I have some more reading, thinking, and praying to do. It’s funny, the things you think about when you are told you have cancer, between the time you think you might be fixin’ to die, and when you realize it won’t actually happen for a while. All the unfinished projects I would leave for Diane…… All my stuff, and I have collected a lot of it, along with my clothes and other personal items would mostly become Good Will donations. All my souvenirs and memories would be of little value to few people. And what of my most precious possessions? What is your most precious possession? Mine is the only thing that can’t be replaced, the dresser full of pictures and videos I have taken over the years, especially our family pictures. Isn’t it ironic? When I’m gone, my most precious possessions have less value than Good Will donations. Who wants some old pictures?

What is ultimately important? I guess it would be nice if in a lifetime, a person could save another person’s life. It would be awesome if in a lifetime, a person could influence another to accept Christ. I think the most important thing is this: Who do you say Jesus is?

Most of you receiving this have told me you are praying for me. Thank you. If you continue, please pray for God’s peace. That may include healing, it may include changing; I’m pretty sure it includes a measure of wisdom and comfort.

Later,

Scott


Advertisements

What are the odds?

Odds that I have prostate cancer: 100%

Odds that I will survive it: 97%

I got the call from the doctor’s office Wednesday just before lunch. The lady said I had “a little bit of cancer” in my prostate, and to come in and see the doctor Thursday evening. I asked her if she said, “a little bit of cancer?” and we both laughed. I’m not sure why either of us was laughing. I was wondering if having a little cancer was like being a little pregnant. Turns out it is.

I spent an hour with the doctor and he carefully gave a detailed description of my diagnosis and treatment options. I do have prostate cancer. I thought the part about having a little bit meant they might just need to trim a little off the sides, but what it means is that I am fortunate that it was discovered early and it has not spread out of the prostate. In fact, it appears that it has not spread much inside the prostate, but it still has to go.

Of the options available to me for treating this cancer, surgery looks to be the best. There are two surgery options, open and laparoscopic / robotic. My doctor says I am a very good candidate for the robotic surgery, and has referred me to a doctor who specializes in that. I will call him tomorrow, and the adventure will continue.

So, the good news is I am not going to die soon from prostate cancer. The bad news is that it looks like I will be going in for surgery and then learning to deal with the changes that come from that surgery.

Until Later,

Scott