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Bernie L lives in Colorado, USA. He was 71 when he was diagnosed in January, 2017. His initial PSA was 10.20 ng/ml, his Gleason Score was 7, and he was staged T3a. His choice of treatment was Surgery (Robotic Laparoscopic Prostatectomy). Here is his story.

During a routine physical exam I had a digital exam of the prostate. A small nodule was found by my PCP. He referred me to a Urologist. I went to the Urologist and the first try he didn't feel it but did it again and did find it. He recommended a prostate biopsy which I did, but not right away. When the biopsy was done, my cancer was labeled Gleason 7 (4+3). Subsequently, a cystourethroscopy was performed and no issues were see in the urethra or bladder.

I chose to have the Da Vinci surgery option since the image testing, CT with contrast, full body bone scan, etc. showed no cancer outside the prostate. I am 71 yrs old but very healthy otherwise and active. Both the radiation Dr and Surgeon said I could choose either treatment based on my physiological condition.

I was scheduled for the surgery June 2, 2017, two months after the diagnosis, due apparently to the availability of the Da Vinci equipment.

According to the Surgeon (a very experienced Da Vinci surgeon with nearly a thousand procedures with that equipment), the procedure went well. apparently when they got in to the abdomen, they found that two of my intestines had fused together externally, probably a long time ago, and they needed to separate them to get to the prostate, which added about a half hour of time to the surgery, but was not a problem. Procedure time was 3-1/2 hours long. I stayed overnight in the hospital and was released to home the next day about noon. I must say the surgery was not a big deal and very little pain. They supplied me with some narcotic pain pills, but I never needed them and only took a few Tylenol over the next 24 hours or so. Biggest hassle was having the catheter in for a week, just an inconvenience really. I had not been in a hospital except for having my tonsils out when about 10 yrs old.

The final pathology report after surgery showed my cancer was PT3a. Percent of prostate involved was 10%. Peripheral: Focally positive, right mid, approx. 2 MM horizontal extent. Positive margin.

The surgeon said he expected my post op PSA to be "undetectable", since the blood supply would be cut off the the cells in that small extension. The six week post op PSA test, unfortunately, didn't agree. It was 0.33 and after another month it is now 0.43 today.

I haven't talked to the surgeon yet, but he had said, depending on the doubling time shown by this last PSA, we would determine the treatment required, probably Hormonal treatment.

Of course I am very disappointed, but will do what needs to be done. Like they say, "Life goes on while we are making other plans".

Bernie's e-mail address is: bglewis AT ecentral.com (replace "AT" with "@")


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