My story starts when I got the news from my brother in 2008 that he was diagnosed with prostate cancer. He was 61 years old and in good health and was diligent about getting his annual physical which included both the digital and PSA tests. His PSA was elevated which led to the biopsy confirming cancer. He elected to have the Radical Prostatectomy and has fully recovered.
In 2009, I decided to join the Calgary Ride for Dad in support of prostate cancer research and education and dedicated my participation to my brother and his success in the battle with prostate cancer. He attributes the success to early detection through annual checkups. Little did I know that in less than two months I would also be diagnosed with the disease, also at age 61.
I had been getting annual physicals from age thirty and prostate checks became a part of the routine in my mid forties. I am fortunate that my current family doctor is very thorough when it comes to medical examinations. When I mentioned my brother’s diagnosis, he sent me off to the Calgary Prostate Cancer Centre when he noticed an abnormality in the digital exam. The subsequent biopsy confirmed cancer and after considering the options, I opted for the surgery. I’m happy to report that everything went well and I’m pretty much back to normal.
I can’t say enough about the Calgary Prostate Cancer Centre and the great work they do with prostate cancer research and education.
During my pre-op visits I guess I was too preoccupied to notice the Resource Centre and the wealth of information that was available. It was only later that I decided to attend an evening session that involved short presentations from professionals that spoke about healthy diets, physical fitness, yoga programs and pelvic floor rehabilitation. My recovery was certainly enhanced by putting to practice some of the information received at this wellness clinic.
I was impressed by the dedication of the staff and volunteers at the Prostate Cancer Centre and in 2010 I signed up with the Man Van as a driver. The program is dedicated to raise awareness to men in their early forties of the importance of getting a PSA test for baseline reference. This mobile testing unit is helping to spread the word out to men at events around Alberta and is manned by volunteers and is supported by generous donations.