Prostate cancer

Name and address withheld.

Some months ago, I underwent a radical prostatectomy: the entire surgical removal of a cancerous prostate.

While I was warned in advance of possible side effects, loss of bladder control and erectile dysfunction, they were always downplayed to alleviate my fears and to encourage treatment.

While the cancer does not appear to have spread beyond the prostate – good news – all the predicted possible, if not probable, side effects have kicked in with a vengeance.

My quality of life has been totally compromised. I am forced as an older man to live in super-absorbent pull-up pants and pads (nappies).

All sexual activity has come to a stop. The pleasures of the flesh are rapidly becoming a distant memory.

Theese are the consequences of what can only be described as brutal, invasive surgery. It is clear that little, if anything, can be done to reverse the situation.

I urge men with a similar problem to give the most serious consideration to any treatment for prostate cancer, particularly surgery, before giving the go-ahead.

Always seek a second, even a third, even a fourth opinion as one has only one life. The side effects of surgery can be, and often are, catastrophic. And, in the eyes of some, may even outweigh the risk of inaction.

One response to “Prostate cancer”

  1. No name says:

    Having read both Sally’s reply April 4 th and the original letter authored 21st March, I agree with the unnamed writer that second, 3 rd and even 4th opion is wise. Unlike breast cancer in women, prostate cancer in men, has little public profile and urgently requires more open and honest public and media conversational to become less stigmatised. As a man whose aggressive prostate cancer was diagnosed when I was 59 years I know that it is not just an older mans disease. The disease in younger men is most often aggressive. At that time 8 years was the maximum prognosis. I also opted for a radical prostatectomy. The time since has been very difficult of course with many challenges and with my experience and knowledge now I would have asked the doctors and specialists if there was some way to find out if the cancer had spread beyond the gland into the lymph before deciding on my best treatment plan. there are so many options with treatment, no one way seems to have proven to be superior to others. In the years since the Northern Rivers Prostate Support group and David Hughes have been a treasured wealth of information, contacts and support.

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