Not worrying, taking one step at a time and trusting your Doctor is the advice I would give anyone diagnosed with any form of cancer or illness
David F., Age 56, Engineering Manager, Santa Clara, CA – surgery performed in January 2010
In October of 2009 (following a progression of higher PSA tests), my doctor referred me to Dr. Gholami.
Starting with the first visit, I was impressed by Dr. Gholami’s direct and confident demeanor. It was clear that he knew what he was talking about. He explained the fact that, in the past, there was a tendency to watch the PSA until things reached a critical point before taking action. We could wait and watch, but the PSA would likely continue to rise with the possibility of real trouble ahead. He went on to say that I should not worry and that we should take things one step at a time (this was a consistent theme throughout the process).
The next step, he said, was to have me undergo a biopsy and then we would take the next steps. The biopsy took about 30 minutes and then we waited for the results.
About two weeks later, the results were in and indicated that I had stage 1 prostate cancer. Again, Dr. Gholami emphasized that I should not worry and following a discussion surrounding treatment options we decided on removal surgery. He said that if I were his brother he would recommend the same approach. There were the possibilities of side effects, but the odds were low and we decided to move forward with the incredibly advanced DiVinci surgery. I was fortunate to have a very good friend who had undergone surgery with no issues and he encouraged me to do the same.
As the Holiday season was just ahead I decided to wait until after, and underwent the surgery in late January 2010. I spent one night in the hospital and then I was released to recover at home with a pain medication, which (as Dr. Gholami predicted) I did NOT need. Bladder control was not a big issue with only a handful of very small incidents when sneezing or coughing. A catheter that had been inserted was removed after two weeks. After 5 months, I was able to have sex just as I had before surgery.
And today, after 7 months I feel better than ever. The above, represents the facts of my journey to date. The back story is that this was much more of an emotional than a physical ride for me and my wife. Note: My wife was very supportive and encouraging.
Dr. Gholami was very patient with my occasional hand wringing and answered all my questions. Prostate Cancer is scary and the treatment is not pleasant. But, as Dr. Gholami stated, the minutes of pain and the inconvenience of having a catheter are significantly outweighed by the fact that the cancer is removed. Wanting to get better is half the battle. Not worrying, taking one step at a time and trusting your Doctor is the advice I would give anyone diagnosed with any form of cancer or illness. Don’t worry, take one step at a time and trust those around you.