Hello! After lurkng for a while I figured an introduction would be in order.
I was diagnosed with metastatic prostate cancer last year on my 58th birthday (April 2016). I had been experiencing severe back pain for several years which I thought was normal for my profession (I own a brewery). My psa had been running < 4 with no noted physical enlargement. Early in 2016 my back pain was increasing and I started experiencing numbness in my feet/legs - my chiropractor said it was pinching of nerves due to slipped disks in L1 - L3. I finally bought my own MRI scan which came back with notes indicating small 'numerous' focci (mets) all over the lower spine. A blood test indicated psa was 550 and alkaline phosphatase was 212 (high!). 4 days later I woke up unable to get out of bed, my wife took me to the emergency room, where 4 hours later I was paralyzed from the mid chest down. Again, this all happened over a period of 4 days, and prior to that I had no clue. Boy was I blindsided!
After 3 hours in an MRI tube they finally located a large tumor on my spine at T9, an emergency laminectomy removing part of T7-T10 as well as a large portion of the tumor was performed. The pathology results indicated prostate cancer. Given the psa number and significant bone involvement I assume there was no need for a prostate biopsy, I did not get a Gleason score.
My Oncologist put me on aligard (luprin) 90 day injections, and I had 20 rounds of radiation, and 8 rounds of chemo (taxetere), and casodex - psa initially went up to 698 in the first month and then plummeted to .29 within 6 months, testosterone was 12. I also started a ketogenic diet, nutritional supplements, cannabis (high thc), hyperbaric, etc during that 6 month period. After finishing chemo in December 2016 my psa started immediately rising - doubling/tripling every 4 weeks and finally rose to 36 last month. The Dr. eliminated the casodex and recently started me on Zytiga.
It's been an interesting ride, I've learned a lot and have had much encouragement from friends and family. I feel relatively well, managing drug side effects, I guess I have yet to fully realize what all this means. I'm approaching this like I have a really bad cold!
Glad to have found this group!