Hi everyone, this is a bit of a long story,
I have posted before. I lost my dad to prostate cancer 5 years ago at age 73. I am finding it difficult to deal with (still) knowing it all could've been prevented. At the time of his death I didn't really fully realise how curable prostate cancer was with a radical prostatectomy (over 90% I think?) My dad did not want this, he was very diligent with going to the doctors but then when faced with having the prostate out-he decided to go with Brachytherapy instead. I was only 15 at the time (he was first diagnosed in 2003 at age 65) so I did not go to the doctors with him but I read up about Brachytherapy and it was supposed to have similar cure rates to having the prostate out so I was quite happy for him to have this instead and none of us tried to convince him to have it out-we had no idea what this would cost us.
This came 2 years after my mother had survived Bowel cancer-which was caught just in time, I think it was stage 3. So when my dad was then diagnosed with this "slow growing", low PSA low gleeson score, it seemed far less serious than my mothers cancer so I wasn't too worried at all since my mother had survived a more serious cancer. However, my mother had surgery to remove the cancer and that is why she is still here 15 years later. My grandfather had died of prostate cancer at 55, but I just put that down to poor medical treatment in the 1950s-there was no Brachytherapy then. Though his pain relief was probably better than what my dad got in the end in 2011!
The oncologist was not very helpful- I think he told my dad that with the family history he should probably have treatment, but just gave him the options-leave it, have it out, have Brachytherapy.
So my dad didn't jut want to leave it but didn't want it out either so he went with Brachytherapy. It did not work and he was then put on hormone treatment 4 years later. 4 years after that he was dead (2011) I know if he had decided to have the prostate out he would still be here now! His father died of prostate cancer and so did his friend (but he had left it without treatment)-this was like a massive warning but my dad still did not want the prostate out! He thought Brachytherapy would work. I feel so stupid for not persuading him to have surgery. I guess that is the problem with prostate cancer because it's so slow growing-do you gamble and hope it never becomes a problem or do you have it taken out? If it was a fast growing cancer you would have no choice-they would just take it out not give you options and say it's so slow growing let's see what happens or experiment with radioactive seeds! What went from one of the "less serious cancers" (even though it kills thousands of men a year) became the worst thing possible.
Well my dad thought he was seeking treatment by having Brachytherapy not being one of those men who leaves it, and we all went back to normal and just assumed he was cured (it seems crazy now that we weren't worried at the time) if he'd had the prostate out he would still be here, he had a low PSA and gleeson only a 6 I think confined to prostate. I feel so guilty, maybe this is the wrong site to post on when there are men suffering right now from it, but I'm just at a loss I feel so bad about it, guilty, angry, my life and families life is forever changed when he could've just had an operation and still be here now enjoying life. It's knowing that the cancer was confined and so easily treatable that gets me-if they'd caught it too late then there's nothing you can do, but we had the best prognosis at the time and he just chose the wrong option and it cost him his life.