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Tony Arrowsmith lives in England. He was 64 when he was diagnosed in June, 2009. His initial PSA was 7.00 ng/ml, his Gleason Score was 6, and he was staged T1c. His choice of treatment was Surgery (Manual Laparoscopic Prostatectomy ). Here is his story.

[Although Tony states that his Gleason Score is 3, it seems likely that this refers to his Gleason Grade. The difference between these two is made clear at Gleason Grading and it is assumed therefore that his Gleason Score was 3+3=6]

A routine BUPA (originally, the British United Provident Association) health check March 09 showed the raised PSA, and my GP referred me to local NHS (National Health Service) hospital on 9 April (immediately after I got PSA result). They repeated the PSA which confirmed the BUPA reading so a biopsy was arranged two weeks later immediately after our return from holiday, otherwise could have been done earlier.

In anticipation, I saw my GP to get advice on best consultant around! As I am covered by medical insurance I switched to private care and saw the selected consultant for the results. Biopsy showed early stage cancer on one side of prostate, with a Gleason Score of 3, and no indication of spread outside prostate. All options were outlined and debated, and an appointment to discuss further made: again I sought advice from my GP and trawled the internet (didn't know about YANA!). I felt confident that Laparoscopic Radical Proctectomy was the best answer and this was done on 30 June - home (with catheter) 48 hours later. No pain particularly but taking it easy: catheter takes some getting used to, but is OK. Catheter removed after two weeks: bladder control not too bad but a bit leaky.

Saw consultant after designated 6 week interval, having had PSA test week before: results were good - pathology report showed no spread outside prostate capsule (though it was close to breaking through) and lymph nodes and other bits clear. PSA was 0.01.

Obviously cheered by all this! Next appointment for repeat PSA in three months (9 Nov 09). At time of writing (20 Aug)- seven weeks after the operation, bladder control improving well: as from last night not using a pad at night, and mainly dry during day: consultant said that laparoscopic technique allows him much better clarity (on screen) and therefore greater precision: this, together with cancer being only on one side of prostate in my case, helped preserve more of the nerve system.

Will keep you posted after next stage.

UPDATED

February 2011

I'm two months off two years since my operation.

I was having PSA checks every three months for first year, moving to six monthly: happily all showing 0.001 PSA. Next one due soon.

Everything else is fine - no issues with waterworks absolutely normal.

So far I realise I am lucky - with fairly early diagnosis, and the decision to go for radical prostatectomy surgery was right one for me.

Happy to be contacted.

Regards, Tony

UPDATED

June 2012

In response to a reminder Tony says:

I am due a routine PSA check, which is actually next week. That will be 3 years since my prostatectomy, and I feel that it will be a more meaningful report (whatever it says!).

So I will update when I've seen the Consultant.

UPDATED

July 2012

Saw my Consultant June 2012 as planned for a routine update following a PSA blood test: result was another zero - this has been consistent zeros since prostatectomy in June 2009 - 3 years ago. Consultant view is that return of cancer is very unlikely, but says "never say never" so further PSA check in 12 months. Feel fine with no problems.

UPDATED

June 2013

Routine PSA check with my Consultant 3 June 2013 - all fine with zero PSA. Now 4 years since op.

UPDATED

July 2014

I saw my Consultant yesterday (30 June 2014) exactly 5 years since he performed my radical prostatectamy. My PSA has remained at zero since the op, and is so now - he signed me off, suggesting that it might be sensible to have my own Doctor do an annual PSA check, but he said effectively it is extremely unlikely the cancer will reoccur. Happily I have no other ill effects or problems other than impotence - the price to pay, but happy to be alive and healthy!

UPDATED

September 2015

Had the annual PSA check, now through my own Doc - 0.001 - which is fine by me!

UPDATED

October 2016

Just continuing with annual PSA checks at my GP.

UPDATED

November 2017

Now at year 8 after radical prostatectamy. Other than the almost inevitable impotence, I am in fine health with virtually undetectable PSA, and no waterworks problems, coming up to 73 years of age. Continue to feel that surgery in my case was best solution as there was no spread of cancer outside of prostate capsule.

Tony's e-mail address is: tonyarrowsmith AT hotmail.com (replace "AT" with "@")


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