Pain in the Ass

My Story

I never thought about Prostate cancer before, I had lots of other things to worry about. But it happens and here is the story of Prostate Cancer and me.

Working on it!! (can't do it all in a day - I need my sleep!)


Please stay tuned

February 2008

I had no symptoms but went to my Dr. to see about a TwinRix vaccination before I headed out on a Caribbean cruise - You may remember the commercial - "Did you know you can get Hepatitis A or B from an ice cube? If you are traveling to the Caribbean ask your Dr about TwinRix."  Well I asked and after looking at my file the Dr said "Oh you're 50! I don't have any recent blood tests - time to book a physical and we will see"  A week later I had a physical including a DRE (digital rectal exam) yes it is uncomfortable but I assure you it is not that bad. The Dr said my prostate was a little ``firm`` and sent me for a PSA (prostate-specific antigen) test along with my other blood tests for cholesterol, blood sugar etc,

PSA 558
Well my blood tests came back and the Dr. called to see me about the results. He said my blood sugar was a little high and my bad cholesterol was a bit high but then he came to the PSA... He said my PSA should be around 3.5 or less and that mine was 558! I asked what that meant and he said that he had never had a patient that got that high before they died. I was a bit in shock as I felt fine and he advised me that he wasn't quite sure what to do but send me for another PSA test to confirm there wasn't a mistake. In the mean time I hit the internet to see what I was in for. It became quite clear that if your PSA is over 20 you have a very high risk of cancer and at 558 you have cancer and will need something done and soon.
My second PSA test results showed that my PSA had risen to 638 in a little over two weeks time (about the max 3.5 increase daily!) and it was decided that I needed to see a surgeon so we booked an appointment and away I went.
 
The surgeon said my prostate was not a little firm, it was "toast". After a biopsy and a few other test it was confirmed that it had spread and was too late for surgery and I was sent to the next Dr. - Dr Chi
Dr.Chi said it was terminal and I had a life expectancy of three years and treatment would be palliative and he wanted to start treatment that day - I was given my first shot of"Zoladex" and told to come back in three months!! I had a few tests in between that determined it had not gone to my bones as is the usual case but had gone to my liver.

Dr. Chi's new life expectancy was now "lets just say less than three years"


the side effects are a pain - lots of sleep leaves me a pretty short day and then there are the hot flashes -  I know - no sympathy on that one.  Loss of bone density and muscle mass means it is very important to get lots of exercise.

done my work, now time to play

Tuesday May the 10th 2011 - Just past three years and going strong - just got my lowest PSA  yet!!

Team Pain in the Ass goes for the fourth run and hits it big.  We won top survivor team and raised over $10,000 in 2011 thanks to you!!!


November 2011 Gone to Mexico for my third annual farewell trip - things can't be that bad!

January 10th 2012 - new numbers look steady

February 7th 2012 - four years since my first PSA test - stay tuned for the latest forecast

April 2012 - Dr Chi admits that he didn't think I would make it past the first year. He has no idea why I am so sensitive to the medication but I know that the sleep, exercise and attitude seem to be working in my favour !

June 17th 2012 - our 5th year that Team Pain in the Ass participated in the 
  Safeway Father's day walk/run for Prostate Cancer:

we raised a new record of $11,268.06 - the top Survivor team in BC!! 
A great team and a great day - thanks everyone for your support!

July 2012 - PSA is up but still hanging in there. See where we are in October!

October 2012  Still going up but stay tuned
 
Remember Movember!

January 2013 results had increased to 1.09 (good number if you don't have cancer) but was the threshold for going back on another drug - bicalutamide - nasty side effects and I had been on a long break after my numbers came down. We decided that since the numbers were still linear that we will wait for April to go back on it as I got excessive breast pain and a few other side effects. Hopefully my #'s will go back down. We will see but keeping positive until I have to worry or run out of options. could be here 6 months or who knows maybe I will make 60!

June 17th 2013 Team Pain in the Ass raised over $9000.00 and was top fundraising team in the lower mainland! Thanks for the great support!!! I got to sing O Canada for the 900 attendees!

July 2013 - Back on the Bicalutamide :( but better than the alternative!!

August 2013 - The bicalutamide has brought my #'s down so will continue and see how far we can get. Hopefully low enough by October to go to one pill every 2nd day instead of daily.

August 31 2013 -Cruise for a Cause Gala fundraiser - I got to be the surprise guest speaker! 

December 2013 - PSA still coming down but not by much - on the pill until mid January minimum.

It is off to Mexico for the 4th annual final farewell tour!! It doesn't get much better than this.

May 2014 my PSA is still down and I am still on the Bicalutamide but it keeps me here!! Getting ready for the 2014 Safeway Do it for Dad Run - 10.8K - lets raise some money!!!! We did - over $8700.00!!

December 2014  The "Ron Johnson 2014 Pioneer Award" was presented to Jacob Gordon
at the Prostate Cancer Foundation BC 
Grant Awards on Dec 11th at VGH!!
Jacob Gordon a PhD Student in the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences received the award for his research paper on targeting SR-B1 - mediated cholesterol influx and intercellular cholesterol synthesis to suppress de novo steroid genesis and castration- resistant prostate cancer progression. Thanks Jacob for the great work!!

June 2015 -Father's Day Run - we had a great turnout of " P.I.T.A.'s " for our 8th run/walk and we raised over $11,000. for Prostate Cancer Foundation BC and were the top survivor team''

August 2015 - my PSA is still stable and I am still enjoying life while I can. Wondering about your PSA? Talk to you Dr. about your options.  Or come out to the Prostate support group on the first Tuesday of the month. See details on the first page.
reliableron@gmail.com

June 2016 We did our 9th annual Father's Day run and have now raised over $75,000.00 since we started!!! I ran the 10 k in a decent time and we had a great group of 25 "Pain in the Ass's"

Thank you for all the support through the years !!!

My #'s are still holding steady and I am still here so that's a great thing!

 
doitforron@gmail.com doitfordad.ca doitfordad.ca safeway father's day run