Symptoms started about six months prior to diagnosis although I had suffered with BPH (Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia) for several years before this. Started with pain in hips when walking that disappeared after short rest period. Then at various times pain in lower back, chest, shoulders and upper arms.
During a trip to Australia to see my daughter and her family I became very unwell with all the previous symptoms plus shortness of breath. Local doctors were very good but could not work out what was wrong. I was then referred to a Consultant Endocrinologist who sent me for various hospital tests. During a CT Scan they noticed lesions on the bones on the ribs which led them to believe I had boney mets. They called the Consultant who then requested a PSA test. The results of that and the CT scan gave the diagnosis.
I was then referred to a Urologist who preformed a DRE (Digital Rectal Examination) to confirm the prostate cancer followed fairly quickly by a biopsy which showed 5 out of 6 samples were cancerous. A bone scan then confirmed widespread bone mets.
The only treatment option given was hormone therapy with started immediately with a Zoladex injection. After ten days my PSA had come down to 64.0. On returning to Corfu I was also prescribed Casodex but had to stop this after two weeks as felt so ill on them. I am now approaching my third injection and am feeling much better. I am having to be very careful of bone fractures and get pains in various places which we are controlling with 400mg Ibuprofen tablets reasonably well. The pains are mostly dull aches which are very wearing with occasional bouts of more severe pain. I also suffer from the dreaded "hot flashes" but all in all am doing OK at the present.
Over the past three to four weeks the bone pain got worse so after discussions with my wife I returned to the Oxycontin tablets instead of solely relying on Ibuprofen 400mg. I am also taking the Casodex and so far the dreaded side affects suffered last time have not returned. Do feel a bit sick and giddy but not too bad, bone pain still about in neck and shoulders but not as bad as before.
We are going to the UK very soon to see family but are taking the opportunity to get second opinions and more tests to see the current situation. Will keep you informed of progress or not!
I am now in the UK and under an Oncologist at Christie's Hospital. Since returning to the UK I initially suffered severe back pain and ended up in Hospital There I was given an infusion of Zometa, had vitamin D and Calcium tablets and they overhauled my pain meds to include MST. This seemed to have the desired affect and I felt fine.
However over the New Year period the back pain returned so an appointment for a one-off radiation burst was made. I suffered a lot of pain and vomiting over the next 3 to 4 days but now the back pain has considerably reduced.
I have another appointment with the Oncologist later in February with another PSA test, before hopefully returning to Corfu for a while.
The trip has been very worthwhile, sorting out many issues. I will keep you posted re any further developments.
Forgot to tell you in my last update that my PSA had reduced to 14.2. However at my last oncologist appointment in February it has risen to 30.9. I have also had to some radiation on my neck but this time apart from a very dry mouth the side affects have been virtually nil.
I have been put back on Casodex again and have another Oncologist appointment and PSA test at the end of March. It seems that this will determine whether the ADT treatment has stopped working and whether I will be taking the next step to Chemotherapy. So I will keep you informed.
Symptoms so far are very sleepy, lethargic and various minor aches and pains all of which I am able to cope with at the moment.
Well not good news. On returning to the UK from Corfu last week I was struck down with very severe back pain and admitted to hospital again.
I received intravenous morphine and Paracetamol shots. Have had an MRI scan to see if further radiation treatment can be attempted on my back but the scan indicated that the problem was in the same place as the last treatment so nothing possible. MRI scan shows T11 is compromised by an extension of the soft tissue mass hence the addition of Dexamethhasone.
Medication now consists of Dexamethasone 16mg daily, MST 30mg, Ibuprofen 880mg per day, Adcal D3 once per day, Laxido 1 daily, Cyclizine 150 mg per day, Venlafaxine 75 mg per day and Omeprazole 40mg per day with Oramorph as required so every day I rattle a bit more...
We have now decided to transfer to York as that is much closer to my family and have gone to live at my son's.
Waiting now for next step/trial to occur.
Sylvia mailed to say that, sadly, Kelvin passed away on 9th May 2011. Our thoughts are with her and the family.