A Prostate Diary – Chapter 7

March

My wife and I sit at home discussing the problem. It was great comfort to have her with me in the consulting room and it makes it far easier to face the coming weeks of treatment. So really the discussion is more concerned with what we are going to eat that night, rather than worrying about exotica like medication and care programme’s.

And actually, as defined by the Lollipop Lady Consultant (LLC), it all sounds pretty simple.

T3b.
T = Tumour
T3 = has broken out of the prostate gland but the
b = it has only spread into the seminal tubes which carry the semen from the prostate.

So whilst my Lurking Lump has been graded a 9 on the Gleason scale it is just a ‘locally advanced prostate cancer’ and the care programme was already started on 28 February when I started taking Bicalutamide. As explained by the LLC, it is a hormonal therapy drug which helps to deny the prostate cancer the testosterone, which the cancer need to fuel its growth. (Clearly this guy really does know more than just how to sort Lego bricks). The hormones will hopefully serve to halt the growth of the Lurking Lump and even cause it to shrink so that when I undergo radiotherapy sometime in June / July it will be reduced in size.

For now the next step will be in 7 days when I will be given a hormonal injection and will then cease the pills. The hormonal injection will be repeated at 12 week intervals, possibly for the next two years.

Sounds like a plan. But as already mooted, no plan survives contact with the enemy … So plan ‘B’.

Well that is where the NHS cavalry come thundering in: firstly, I get an email from Macmillan Cancer Support group asking me to fill in a questionnaire about my fears and perceived needs in the time to come. I fill it in and within minutes of completing that questionnaire my lovely sounding Care Nurse L* sends an email thanks me for doing that and asks if we can have a phone consultation in a weeks’ time. Gosh, these people really don’t give up, so – memo to self – make sure they are not wasting their time.

Now some of this has been a bit technical so if you want to understand more than you cannot go wrong with
https://prostatecanceruk.org/
https://www.cancerresearchuk.org
https://www.macmillan.org.uk
https://BlueRibbonFoundation.org.uk