I was excited about having state of the art robotic surgery and eager to rid myself of the cancer before it spread.
Double-Edged Sword with Dr. Bob Williams
Robert J. (Bob) Williams, PhD, is Chief Strategy and Policy Officer for Centerstone of America, the largest community based provider of behavioral healthcare in the U.S. Bob is a licensed consulting psychologist and was a consultant with the Center for Creative Leadership for 10 years, working with executives from numerous Fortune 500 companies. He has served on the faculties of the University of Denver and the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Bob is a recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award by Mental Health America in Indiana and has been listed in Who’s Who in Medicine and Healthcare and Who’s Who in America. Bob and his wife, Kay, an Associate Professor of Education and Director of Teacher Certification at Hanover College, have three grown children and four granddaughters.
I decided to contact the surgeon recommended by the urologist. I went armed with the many questions and all the test results I had accumulated over the previous three months since my first unsettling PSA score. His office staff confirmed he was a leader in the da Vinci robotic procedure as promised by the urologist and I was duly impressed with his answers and his positive surgery outcomes.
At this point, the urologist and his nurse practitioner were discussing treatment options. First option: Do nothing; try not to worry about the cancer and live life to the fullest. About half of all men get prostate cancer if they live long enough and rarely is prostate cancer what they actually die from. Another option: hormone therapy (called androgen deprivation therapy). I could take hormones to suppress the levels of testosterone in my system since testosterone levels are associated with prostate cancer.
Having had several colonoscopies over the years, I was somewhat inured to dressing into flimsy gowns and sticking my hiney out for medical examination, frequently with a medical staff audience. Of course, for those colonoscopies, I was going to be put under anesthesia and typically had been given something before hand to help me “relax.”
The thought of prostate cancer is something that most guys manage to keep at an emotional arm’s length – any guy could theoretically get it if they lived long enough, right? It’s a double edged sword – if I have cancer that means I’ve managed to live a long, long time – a reasonable emotional trade off. But when the moment arrived that I was diagnosed with prostate cancer, I suddenly felt like time had caught up with me way too soon!