Mike Hears Three Words Nobody Ever Wants to Hear: “You Have Cancer”
I never expected or at least I hoped I'd never hear those words for myself or my family... "You Have Cancer." Unfortunately, I did hear those words recently and I will need to take some time away from the Mix Morning show to deal with it.
I can honestly say that I was completely blindsided when my doctor sat me down to tell me that I had prostate cancer. I vividly remember thinking to myself as I waited in the exam room for the doctor, that everything was going to be fine and that I probably had some sort of infection. I had pretty much convinced myself that even after my blood test and the biopsy, that there was no way that I could have cancer.
The doctor entered the room and the first words out of his mouth were "thank goodness we ordered the biopsy, because you have cancer." At that moment I became a statistic.....1 in 6 men will get prostate cancer in their lifetime and I was now one of them. The doctor went on to tell me that if a man lives long enough, he will either die of prostate cancer or die with it. Prostate cancer mostly affects men who are 65 and older, but it also, like in my case hits younger men too.
Unfortunately for men like me, who are still young with a longer life expectancy than older men, if I don't do something about my cancer, it would probably kill me, before something else did.
My doctor tried his best to explain to me what was going to happen in the coming weeks and what I needed to do to see if the cancer had spread to anywhere else in my body, but I have to say after that first sentence, I didn't hear much more, things kind of went quiet in my head...all I kept hearing over and over is "You Have Cancer".
The good news was that it was caught early. The bad news, for me, is that is' a fairly aggressive and high grade form of cancer, so there was no waiting around and just monitoring it to see if it was growing or starting to spread. Something needed to be done soon.
I've had blood tests annually for the past 4 or 5 years and one of the tests was a PSA test which can be a first indication that you may have prostate cancer. My PSA had been rising slowly for the past few years, so my doctor recommended I see a urologist at Idaho Urological Institute. He examined me and agreed that I needed a biopsy to check for cancer.
I've now seen more doctors in the past few months than in my entire life combined and apparently that won't be ending anytime soon.
My surgery is Tuesday morning 6/14. I will be undergoing a radical robotic prostatectomy to remove my prostate. I will also have my lymph nodes in my hips removed. The doctor advised the Lymph Node removal because with high grade aggressive cancers, like mine, the first place they usually spread, if they spread is the lymph nodes. Once they are removed they will also be tested for cancer. If cancer is found in the lymph nodes, then after recovering for 6 to 8 weeks from surgery I would have to undergo radiation treatments every day for 8 weeks. Needless to say, I'm hoping the cancer is isolated to the prostate only.
Some good news is that after a CT scan, lung x-rays, a bone scan and blood tests, no other cancers can be detected so far, but after checking the lymph nodes after my surgery we will know more.
It's very interesting, that if someone told me I had a 90 percent chance of winning the lottery, I would think that is amazing, I'm going to win the lottery. My doctor told me I have a 90 percent chance of being cured and for some reason, 90 percent doesn't seem like a high enough percentage to feel comfortable with my chances. I realized, as optimistic as I usually am, I was focusing on the 10 percent instead of the 90 percent.
So beginning Tuesday I will be off the radio for a few weeks for surgery and recovery time. I hope to come back, at least on a limited basis by the end of the month or early July.
I will update Nicole and JD, so all of you know what's going on and how I'm doing, and while I'm out Jeff will also be helping out on the morning show.
So that's what's going on, I thought, it was best to tell you my radio family, because we've spent a lot of years together, and as you know I share most of my life with you, both the good and the bad.
I am a big believer in the power of prayer, so trust me, yours will be greatly appreciated.
On another note, for those of you men who might be reading, make sure and get checked for prostate cancer. If you are 50 or older get checked every 5 years, for men who have prostate cancer in the family get checked starting at 45. I have had a few friends who were diagnosed with prostate cancer in their 40s. It's best to find it early so it can be treated. And take it from me, there aren't always warning signs or symptoms. I feel as good right now as I ever have and I'm headed to surgery this week. Had I not been having yearly blood tests or a check up, I would be still walking around with cancer growing, unchecked inside me, till some time in the future that I was having symptoms, which may have been to late to have a great chance to fully recover, so the only way to know for sure is to talk to you doctor.
Talk to you all again very soon