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How I survived prostate cancer

From Mick Glover

I am 73 years old and a prostate cancer survivor. I survived because I had water works problems. I went to see my GP and on snapped the infamous glove. Fear not, lads, this is more embarrassing than painful. A lot of 'uming' and 'aring' from the doctor followed. After the rubber finger was removed, he referred me to the local hospital.

At the hospital, I met some very worried looking men, all drinking water by the gallons to pee on demand into a machine which looks like a bucket with whirly bits in it. This measures the power of your pee, or lack of power as the case may be. The resulting chart had a sudden descent downwards. I then had more embarrassing investigation of my rear end, including a student bum inspector who kept apologising as they took some scrapings for testing. Again, this was more red faced than pain. I was then allowed to go home.

I received a curt letter which simply said, "You have prostate cancer". There was no doctor to break it gently to me here. The upshot was to attend the hospital daily for 6 weeks of radiotherapy, with weekends off for good behaviour! So daily I attended the hospital. I had to lay down on a long platform and was trundled slowly into the jaws of a large machine. This is totally painless and you even get to meet a lovely bevy of caring nurses. 

One problem with the scrapings that nobody told about was that a scab forms and when the scam becomes detached you get blood in your pee. Unfortunately this happened to me when I was using a public toilet urinal. I don't know who was more astonished as my blood/pee went slowly downhill past my fellow pee'ers. They all looked at me and I looked at the bloke next to me! 

Also, and just as importantly, there are also injections of a capsule into the stomach. This is slightly painful. The only drawback is you tend to put on a lot of weight - don't let anyone tell you it's because you eat too much! And the cost of new trousers is a bind. Every 12 weeks I would toddle off to the local clinic so another nice nurse could inject the capsule into my tummy. I also had regular blood tests to check everything was going OK but I always had very good results. This is also carried out by the same nice nurse at the clinic.

That all happened 4 years ago and as I look at the smiles of my grandchildren I think "Thank God for the doctor with the rubber glove!"

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Updated: 9 June 2010