POSTED: August 21, 2018

Mark Slaughter: My Prostate Cancer Story

DSCN7750 (ed) Denise & Mark

Mark Slaughter And His Wife Denise

The “C” word. No one can imagine the horror of being told you have cancer.

My problems began with urinary troubles: middle of the night urges, frequency, and the inability to go, start, or finish a urine stream. My primary care physician recommended a urologist.

My urologist was awesome and earned my confidence and trust with his approach. He explained he was trying to see a picture rather like a jigsaw puzzle, but in order to see the picture clearly, he needed more pieces of the puzzle. He convinced me to let him do a digital rectal exam (DRE).

The result was not good. On a 0-10 scale, 0-5 would indicate no problems and 5-10 would range from concern to panic. He said mine was about a 7 or 8. Very smooth everywhere, no evil nodules or lumps, but way too hard. Unlike the softer part of your thumb near the palm of your hand (like it should be), it felt like the harder area of your thumb where the bone is located. It was definitely a reason for concern.

Next, he talked me into a PSA test. I was one of the men who, about eight or nine years ago, read the controversial studies about PSA tests and unreliable results, and I took them to heart. Many organizations were saying PSA was overrated and shouldn’t even be used. So, I had stopped letting doctors test for mine. Now, my blood was tested for PSA and the result was bad, very bad. It was 259 (four is the top end of what is considered acceptable). To see more of the picture, my doctor wanted to do a biopsy. He respectfully listened to all of my logical arguments.

No number of needle probes will show you enough of the prostate. Too many and you can damage a fragile little organ. Besides, you would have to access a sterile body part by going in through a sewer (the rectum). He held his ground and said he really needed this important piece of the puzzle. My wife and I thought about it overnight and agreed to let him do the biopsy.

My biopsy procedure was a piece of cake. I was given an antibiotic before the procedure. An ultrasound device accurately guided the doctor, and he was able to get 12 samples: 6 from each side of the prostate. Of the 12, I was really only hurt by one of them. Each felt like someone quickly poked me with a sharp pencil. I heard the device click. I required no pain medication and passed a little blood during urination for a few days afterwards.

Then the results came. The Gleason grading system is used to evaluate the samples taken during a biopsy. A Gleason score is 1 through 10, where 1 to 5 is clear, and 6 to 10 indicates positive results for cancer. The percentage of each sample that is found to be cancerous also indicates whether the disease has spread beyond the prostate gland.

Of the 12 needle biopsy locations, nine were found to contain high percentages of cancer. Of those nine, eight had a Gleason score of 8, and the last one was scored at 7. These scores indicated the cancer had already spread into my body, beyond the prostate. My doctor said that the next step was to get computerized tomography (CT) images and bone scans that, together, would show us where the cancer had spread. The scans were performed in the hospital as an out-patient.

For the CT scan, I laid on a conveyor that moved me through a tunnel like machine. It rotated around me and took X-rays from multiple positions. A computer then combined the images into cross-section images of my body. The bone scan was a nuclear imaging procedure in which tiny radioactive tracers were injected into a vein. Then, I laid on a conveyor similar to the CT scan and the machine could view the tracers and obtain images. Various parts of my body absorb the tracers in differing degrees. Areas in my organs and skeleton with higher absorption would show up in the images as bright spots indicating abnormalities caused by the cancer.

The procedures were simple and easy enough. The results were another story.

February 8, 2018 is a day emblazoned in my memory, a day I will never forget, the day time stopped. That was the day I was told I have the big “C” word. I have cancer.

My urologist was tactful but did not mince words. The CT scan showed cancer in my lymph nodes, in my groin, and up my back on both sides of my spine. The bone scan showed lesions in four places on my pelvis and six places on my ribs. The tests all showed that I have advanced stage IV metastatic prostate cancer. He said there is no cure. But, we can manage it with hormone treatments and chemotherapy. With no treatment, I might only have a couple of years to live. With treatments, perhaps three to five years.

Upon hearing this news, my first thought was, I am dead. I had been standing next to my wife Denise, who was seated at her desk as we listened on the speakerphone. I collapsed into a seated position on the floor and reached out to catch Denise as she fell out of her chair. We crumbled to the floor together, sobbing and wailing with wrenching heaves of our chests. Squeezing each other as though life had ended that very moment. We embraced. We cried. We cried. We cried. Time stopped.

We laid together in a heap on the floor for a long time. By the time we climbed to our feet, we could hardly breathe. My face hurt from all the tears. Our eyes were swollen, our faces red below our eyes and otherwise colorless as though life itself had drained from our faces. It was like our lives were over.

My urologist referred us to an oncologist. We couldn’t stand him. He was rude and dismissive as he explained the chemo treatment plan and the poor prognosis for the remainder of my life. It is an understatement to say that he lacked a good bedside manner. Several friends immediately recommended we get a second opinion.

A friend of mine, and my former primary care physician when we lived in Atlanta, told me to forget that guy and get myself to the Winship Cancer Institute at Emory University. I did just that. At Emory I found an incredible oncologist who was instrumental in the CHAARTED study that showed excellent results of early hormone therapy combined with chemotherapy for the treatment of advanced metastatic prostate cancer.

My first appointment with this doctor was an education in prostate cancer. He explained the course of the disease, different methods of treatments, and answered each and every question I had. He described the treatment options as the tools in his toolbox. Whenever one might fail to produce results, he would reach for another one. He explained new chemo drugs, such as Zytiga (abiraterone acetate) which is administered orally, and he explained chemotherapy using docetaxel infusions. Some people prefer chemo infusions because it is six treatments and you are done. Other people would rather take pills daily for the rest of their lives. No study had been done that showed any real difference in the outcome of chemotherapy infusions versus the new chemo drugs.

At first, I was going to go the pill route. I was terrified of chemotherapy because of my preconceived notions and the horror stories from people I had known who went through chemo infusions and suffered horrendous side effects before dying painful deaths.

But there was a major snag in my getting approval for the new pill form of Zytiga (abiraterone acetate). Because I am on Medicare and have the Part D drug coverage, I was not eligible for any financial aid from the pharmaceutical companies or from any other charitable organizations for this new drug. Consequently, it was going to cost me in the neighborhood of $5,000 per month for the rest of my life. This was a huge blow to overcome mentally and financially. There was no way I could afford that.

My oncologist reassured me again that the results of chemotherapy infusions are as positive as those from the new drug Zytiga. Medicare would pay for the chemotherapy infusions. Because of these two considerations, I chose to take the chemotherapy infusions. Believe me, nothing about taking chemotherapy infusions came close to the fear and angst of anticipating it.

I have now completed all six required cycles of chemotherapy infusions with Taxotere (docetaxel). Each cycle took three weeks. The biggest side effect for me was the infamous cancer fatigue, especially during the first week after each infusion. It would take about all the energy I had to walk from my chair to my bed for a nap. My ability to concentrate was affected, too. Sometimes I had to think very hard about words or especially about sequential steps required to do something. This is a phenomenon called “brain fog.” Cramps in my ankles and legs were also problems at times.

My oncologist prescribed Compazine (prochlorperazine) to prevent nausea during the cycles and it worked extremely well for me. I also took Prednisone, a corticosteroid to suppress my immune system and reduce the negative side effects of the Taxotere (docetaxel). The Prednisone affected my mood and appetite, but I had no swelling or weight gain.

The routine at each treatment was: a lab test for blood markers, doctor appointment, then chemo infusion. If my blood looked good, the doctor approved the chemo infusion, then the Taxotere (docetaxel) was prepared and administered. The positive results were immediate. After the first infusion my PSA dropped from 259 to 20, then to 5 after the next infusion, then to 2, then 1.7, 0.83, and finally down to 0.55. Similarly, my testosterone level dropped from around 500 to less than 20, which the doctors consider insignificant. They tell me my testosterone level is that of a prepubescent boy.

One thing I did not have at all was neuropathy in my feet or hands. My wife read about studies done in Canada, the United Kingdom, and France that indicate icing of the fingers and toes during chemotherapy infusions prevents any changes to fingernails and toenails as well as preventing neuropathy.

I asked my oncologist and he said although there are no definitive studies in the United States that show results, he didn’t object to my doing it. My wife has faithfully kept my hands and feet iced during treatments. It was not pleasant, but it was certainly tolerable and gave me a big pay-off. To me, it was like a kid playing in the snow with no mittens. Each of my chemotherapy infusion sessions lasted about one and a half to two hours. Once in a while, when my hands or feet got too cold, I took them out of the ice for a short break. At the end of all six treatments, I had no changes in my fingernails or toenails and no neuropathy.

Another side effect of the chemotherapy infusions was hair loss. I had heavy, patchy hair loss on my head that started about 13 days after my first infusion. The afternoon when large patches of hair began falling out into my hands in the shower, I decided to take action. The next morning, slowly, deliberately, I dressed, collected my wallet and keys, walked to the garage, got in the car, drove to the nearest barber and got a buzz cut. I didn’t think about it. I just did it. And it was one of the best decisions I have made. It was far easier to manage quarter inch long hair than patches of messy hair. I would say to any guy, wait and see if your hair begins to fall out, then just accept the fact and manage it. I’ve also lost about three fourths of my body hair.

My hormone therapy started with Firmagon (degarelix) because it does not cause flairs or spikes in the bone lesions. Some other hormones do. After a few weeks the oncologist changed my hormone to Lupron (leuprolide). These hormones are effectively medical castration. The prostate cancer feeds on testosterone and by significantly reducing the amount of testosterone, they deprive the cancer of food. The hormones have caused me to have some hot flashes, similar to what women experience in menopause. Sometimes I have night sweats.

As for sexual function, I am 66 years old and have suffered from erectile dysfunction for six or seven years from a history of high blood pressure, type II diabetes and prostate issues, including prostatitis. One of the results of hormone therapy has been the loss of sexual function and even a reduction in the size of my genitals. I rarely have any kind of erection, although I still have the same physical feelings associated with sexual arousal.

But, with a loving partner, these things have not been so hard to accept. I still have the good feelings two people share in intimacy. I would rather be alive than fully-functional, sexually. I do admit my history has made this easier to accept than it might be for some younger men. The key here is perspective. Some choices in life are just hard. You have to decide what matters the most.

Overall, my cancer treatments and the associated side effects have been far less of an ordeal that the initial fear of treatment.

The biggest positive about chemotherapy infusion treatment is that you do it and it’s over forever. For me, I have now completed the whole course of chemotherapy and will never have to do it again. Compare this to a lifetime of multiple pills on a daily basis, worrying all the while about how long they might be effective.

On the down side, you have to get your head around walking into a room feeling good and letting them inject you with strong chemicals that will make you feel bad. It’s rather bizarre. I live about 200 miles from my cancer treatment center, so the car trip and hotel stay gave me way too much time to let bad thoughts get in the way before each treatment. Again, it’s all about controlling your thoughts and attitude. I know it sounds trite, but holding onto a positive attitude really matters.

I have a wonderful support group. First, my loving wife of 46 years is a registered nurse and the best advocate anyone could ever ask for. Second, I live in an active adult community of residents over 55. So many of my neighbors have been supportive and shared their own experiences with cancer. Third, I have a strong faith. My church friends have been amazing with calls, cards, food, gifts, and time for visits. It has been humbling to see how many dear friends I have and how supportive they are in my time of need. I think this is one of the biggest keys in getting through cancer.

I also have to mention some of the person-to-person connections I have been provided with through Us TOO that have helped greatly with good information and support.

My advice to anyone facing chemotherapy is to first go to the nearest national cancer institute (NCI). There are 70 NCI-designated cancer centers located in 36 states and the District of Columbia. These centers are the backbone of research, clinical trials for the newest treatments, and clinical care for cancer patients. Here you can then find an oncologist who specializes in your particular cancer. Ask questions, listen to suggestions, and make a shared decision with your oncologist and caregiver about what treatment you will get.

Each person’s cancer is unique and your responses to drugs will also be unique. So, ask your oncology pharmacy specialist about any drugs to be used and their most common side effects.

The Grim Reaper follows us all. Most of our lives we ignore the inevitable fact that everyone will die. But, when you receive the diagnosis of a non-curable, chronic, and ultimately terminal disease, the Grim Reaper comes up closer behind you. The key to survival is to never look back. Focus forward. Look to the light of day. Focus on the here and now. Enjoy life.

In a strange way, having advanced stage IV metastatic prostate cancer is a gift. It has changed the focus of my life in positive ways. Because now, more than ever before, I live in the present. And life is more intense, fuller, and more complete than I could have ever imagined.

Mark Slaughter © August 8, 2018

1 Comment


A prostate cancer survival guide by a patient and victim.

Men Beware, the ugly truth. What doctors are not telling you about prostate cancer.

Updated April 28, 2019

In my opinion:

Per multiple experts: The testing and treatments for prostate cancer are often worse than the disease.

Follow the money!
The man that invented the PSA test, Dr. Richard Ablin now calls it: The Great Prostate Mistake, Hoax and Profit Driven Public Health Disaster 1.

Read the sad truth about prostate cancer outdated over testing and treatments, dangers, exploitation for profit by some predatory doctors. Prostate cancer dirty secrets, lies, exaggerations, deceptions and elder abuse. Healthcare is often about making money off others misfortune and is full of conflicts-of-interest. Many in healthcare don’t want to do the right thing.

Disclaimer: I have no affiliation with any group or organizations. I am not a doctor. I do not prevent, treat, diagnose, cure or advise on medical matters. The information in this document is for educational purposes only. If you need treatment or medical advice, consult a competent and trustworthy medical doctor. I am not responsible for this documents misuse, misquoting, additions and deletions, personal attacks, modifications and plagiarism.

Warning: This document contains blunt content, adult subjects and may be offensive to some people. The truth is sometimes unpleasant, discretion is advised.

Anyone may copy, distribute or post part or all of this document without bias or modifications.

I created this document after I was extensively abused, exploited, lied to, provided substandard care and had my privacy and confidentiality violated.

Get the hard facts about prostate cancer testing and treatment that no one will tell you about, even after it’s too late. Any man over 50 or anyone concerned about cancer in general, possible dangers from clinical trials, injuries and deaths from medical mistakes, quality prescriptions at a huge discount from Canada, exploitation and elder abuse, HIPAA loopholes and privacy issues should read this document. Prostate cancer patients are often elderly, over treated, misinformed and exploited for profits by predatory doctors [1,9,10,25,27]. At times profit vs. QOL (quality of life). Low risk Gleason 6 (3+3) is a pseudo-cancer mislabeled as a cancer; it does not need detection or treatment [1,2,9]. Don’t let conventional testing and treatment, predatory doctors or lack of knowledge destroy your life. Prostate cancer studies and statistics are often flawed because they include Gleason 6 pseudo-cancer. Recommended reading, books: The Great Prostate Hoax by Richard Ablin MD and The Big Scare, The Business of Prostate Cancer by Anthony Horan MD.

Facts per reliable sources:
1. Multiple studies have verified more harm and deaths caused by prostate cancer testing and treatment than from prostate cancer itself [1,9,10,11,22,23,25,27].
2. Extensively documented unnecessary testing and treatment of prostate cancer for profit or poor judgment by some doctors in the USA [1,5,9,10,25,27].
3. Medical mistakes are the third cause of deaths in the USA. More then suicide, firearms and motor vehicle accidents combined 13. Yearly 8.8 million hospital patients suffer from needless harm and 440,000 hospital patients die because of errors or hospital acquired infections.
4. About 1 man in 6 will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his life. 233,000 new cases per year in the USA.
5. 10% to 20% of nurses abuse drugs because of easy access 4. Other study estimates are as high as 24%
6. 1 million dangerous prostate blind biopsies are performed per year in the USA [5,11, 22,23].
7. 6.9% hospitalization within 30 days from a prostate blind biopsy complication 11.
8. About 1.3 to 3.5 deaths per 1,000 from prostate blind biopsies 5.
9. 0.5% died and 20.4% had one or more complications within 30 days of a radical prostatectomy 15. Prostatectomy related regret increases over time, 47% at 5 years after surgery 29.
10. A study of early-stage prostate cancer found no difference in surviving at 10 years whether men had surgery, radiation or monitoring (no treatment) 12.
11. Low-risk Gleason 3+3=6 bogus cancer lacks the hallmarks of cancer yet it is often aggressively over treated [1,2,9]. Only about 15% of high-grade prostate cancers with significant amounts of Gleason 4 or 5 require detection and treatment, only these types of prostate cancers are potentially deadly.
12. Prostate cancer patients are at an increased risk for chronic fatigue, anxiety, insomnia, depression, suicide and heart attacks.
13. Depression in prostate cancer patients is about 27% and 22% at 5 years, for advanced prostate cancer patient’s depression is even higher 6. Men are more likely to take antidepressants after treatment. Suicides occurred 2.51 to 4 times more often in prostate cancer patients. Men are often not screened for depression after treatment.
14. 75% of physicians in the world would refuse chemotherapy if they had cancer.
15. Breast cancer receives much more research funding, publicity than prostate cancer despite the similar number of victims.
16. Per one published study: Men who experience long term severe symptoms after prostate cancer treatment was sizeable. 12 years after 87% had erectile dysfunction/sexual inactivity, 20% urinary incontinence and 14% had bowel symptoms. Moderate and severe distress was also noted.
17. When insurance payment reimbursement for ADT hormone therapy decreased so did the number of patients being prescribed ADT therapy [17,18]. ADT therapy can have devastating side effects.
18. Your privacy and confidentiality is often just an illusion. By law, cancer reporting is mandatory for studies, research, etc. HIPAA exceptions and loopholes often sanction privacy breaches. This can results in copying, distribution, downloading and viewing of patient files by numerous individuals without a patients knowledge or consent.
19. Because of the unlimited potential for harm, the risk of overtreatment and the questionable benefits; for 2018 The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) is now recommending for PSA testing and screening: Men 55 to 69, letting men decide for themselves. For men over 70, no screening at all is recommended.
20. After prostate cancer treatment, ED estimates are deceptive because statistics are often quoted after the use of ED drugs. ED percentages are substantially higher without ED drugs,. Similar deceptive tactics also apply to incontinence percentages.
21. Per some experts: Prostate cancer can possibly be spread by invasive procedures such as biopsies, prostatectomy, TURP, LDR and HDR brachytherapy or insertion of fiducials for image guided radiotherapy. Invasive procedures can also cause ED, infections, urinary problems, complications, sepsis and occasionally death.

The generally accurate humor and sarcasm is intended to entertain and educate while reading this possibly laborious text.

Follow the money $: If a surgeon is financially responsible for operating expenses, a large staff or an oncologist is also responsible for a lease on multimillions of dollars in radiation treatment equipment, do you think they would be more or less honest about the benefits and hazards of treatment when recommending treatment? Do you think the profit margin would compromise some doctor’s ethics? What is the purpose in over testing and treating cancer that often will not spread (testing and treatment frequently cause lower quality of life, ED, incontinence, depression, fatigue, etc) if it was not extremely profitable? The medical field is alluding to the fact that prostate cancer testing and treatment may do more harm than good. Because of the unlimited potential for harm and the questionable benefit, for 2018 The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) is now recommending for PSA testing and screening: Men 55 to 69, letting men decide for themselves. For men over 70, no screening at all is recommended. Prostate cancer patients are often elderly and exploited for profit. The treatments offered have horrible side effects. Prostate cancer is often slow growing and of low risk and can just be monitored. Often no treatment is the best treatment. Over testing and treatment has been verified by numerous experts, studies and investigations, documentation, etc. Getting a treatment recommendation from a doctor who profits from the treatment is sometimes a mistake. [1,9,10,17,18,25]

A 12 or 18 core blind biopsy, holey prostate! One million dangerous prostate blind biopsies are performed in the USA each year and they should be banned: Men with a high PSA tests result are often sent to a urologist for a blind biopsy. This technology is 30 years old. Blind prostate biopsy cost in the USA is at least $3 billion annually. False positives and false negatives can occur. Men should be told about other options; Percent free PSA test, 4Kscore test, PCA3 test or a 3T MRI test before receiving a blind biopsy. These tests can often eliminate the need for a risky and invasive blind biopsy. Unfortunately, sometimes insurance companies may not pay for other tests. Insertion of 12 or 18 large hollow needles through the dirty rectum into a gland the size of a walnut, a blind Biopsy can result in pain, infections, a risk of temporary or permanent erectile dysfunction [22,23]. Biopsies can cause, urinary problems, 6.9% hospitalization within 30 days from a complication11, sometimes even death from sepsis (About 1.3 to 3.5 deaths per 1,000)5. There is also debate that a biopsy may spread cancer because of needle tracking. A blind biopsy is degrading and can also increase PSA reading for several weeks or months, further frightening men into unnecessary treatment. Blind biopsies are almost never performed on other organs. One prestigious hospital biopsy information pamphlet states: semen color has a rust tint. Another well known hospital describes semen as: reddish or brown. These statements can be an extreme exaggeration (mostly lies). After a biopsy a man’s semen can turn into a jet black goo. This could be an unpleasant surprise for a man and especially for his unsuspecting partner. However, if a biopsy is performed before Halloween or April Fools’ day this may be of use to a few men. If some prestigious hospitals are not factual about the color of semen, what other facts are being misrepresented? [5,11,22,23].

Bone scan scam: Prostate cancer patients are often sent for a bone scan. A bone scan has about a 13% chance of having a false positive and only 3 men in 1,000 have bone cancer who have a bone scan. Bone scans may sometimes be unnecessary in low-risk prostate cancer patients.

Low-risk cancer patients or patients with short lifespan are often sent for aggressive treatment by some doctors when monitoring is often a better option: An extreme example of overtreatment is one SBRT radiation clinical trial. Prostate cancer patients were intentionally treated with a huge dose (50Gy total, 5 fractions) of radiation resulting in disastrous long-term side effect for some of these men. The typical SBRT dose is 35 to 36.25 Gy, 5 fractions. A large percentage of prostate cancer patients in this clinical trial had low-risk prostate cancer and may not have required any treatment.

Clinical trials may (or may not) be hazardous to patients: The goal of a clinical trial is to collect information; the intent is not necessarily to help or cure patients. In a clinical trial, if someone is given a treatment that will harm them (as in the above example) or given a placebo in place of treatment or needed treatment is withheld, the patient may be deceived or harmed. Investigate before you participate in any clinical trial. Even if you do get a safe and effective treatment, it may not be available to you after the clinical trial is over. If the trial is for a drug, you will not be told if you are getting a drug or a placebo until after the trial is over.

Becoming radioactive: LDR Brachytherapy (permanent radioactive seed implant). This procedure implants 60 to 200 radioactive seeds in the prostate. Sometimes resulting in urinary problems, pain, complications, etc. The patient will literally become radioactive for months and up to 1 or 2 years. The patient may set off radiation alarm at airports, seaports and border checkpoints. He will also be required to use a condom initially, have no close contact with pregnant women, infants, children and young pets for months or longer. Occasionally he may even eject dangerous radioactive seeds during sexual activity or urination. The patient will become like a walking Chernobyl, having radioactive scrap metal in his crotch and emitting hazardous radiation from his crotch. He will also be required to carry a card in his wallet stating he is radioactive. If he dies cremation may be a big problem because of the radioactive seeds. The videos of this procedure seem bizarre. Anesthesia and a catheter will also be required. LDR Brachytherapy has a probability of ED and other sexual dysfunctions. In my opinion this treatment is a bizarre and poor option.

ADT Hormone therapy, big profits and devastating side effects: ADT injections are a common and expensive treatment. Men are prescribed ADT hormone therapy, AKA chemical castration as an additional or only treatment. ADT therapy is sometimes overprescribed for profit, per some studies. Hormone therapy is often very expensive (Profitable for doctors if provided at the doctor’s office). It can have horrible, strange and devastating side effects; feminization, hot flashes, fatigue, weight gain, metabolic syndrome, long-term or permanent ED, depression, cognitive issues, the penis could shrink and testicles can completely disappear, he may grow breasts. This treatment can have numerous mind and body altering side effects. One man stated that ADT therapy turned him into an emotional, obese, menopausal woman. Men are sometimes actually castrated (orchiectomy) as a cancer treatment to reduce testosterone. Studies (Medicare and financial) have documented doctors do over prescribe ADT therapy for profit (depending on Insurance payout rates/profit margin). When insurance payment reimbursement for ADT decreased so did the number of patients being prescribed ADT therapy [17,18]. Overtreatment with ADT is extremely profitable, unfortunate and often avoidable.
Major surgery, major side effects: Scores of lawsuits have been filed against urologists performing robotic prostate cancer surgery, device manufacturer and the hospitals. Nerve-sparing Robotic prostatectomy is often touted as being a better treatment (“The gold standard”) and having fewer side effects, this is usually an extreme exaggeration. Robotic surgery can result in a faster initial recovery. The nerves cannot always be spared. Decreased libido, pain, Long-term risk of incontinence, fatigue, ED, depression, some men will ejaculate urine and have a shorter penis, etc is about the same as conventional surgery. Patients undergoing surgery are at about a 22% chance of long-term or permanent fatigue. A catheter will be required. 0.5% died and 20.4% had one or more complications within 30 days of a prostatectomy 15. Patients can have unrealistic expectations about the results and regret this option, per some studies. The ED rates and other side effects are often understated to patients. A published study found that prostatectomy related regret increases over time, 47% of men at 5 years after surgery 29. In my opinion this is one of the worst treatment options. Men are often left limp and leaking after this surgery. [1,2,3,14,15]. Also read Darryl Baillie story
Patients should not be naive: Medical mistakes are the third cause of deaths in the USA. Medical mistakes cause more deaths than suicide, firearms and motor vehicle accidents combined. Countless other patients have been harmed by medical mistakes. If you are having surgery or a procedure takes precautions if possible. Have someone qualified or knowledgeable monitor you and your medications, etc. Doctors, nurses and technicians can be profit motivated, use outdated procedures, be lazy, incompetent, make mistakes, and be apathetic or rushed. Occasionally harm can be done or not prevented with intent or for profit. 10% to 20% (up to 24%) of nurses abuse drugs because of easy access 4. Hospital staff often work 12 hour shifts, further contributing to medical mistakes because of fatigue. Doctor’s offices and clinics can see many patients in a relatively short amount of time (4 patients per hour per doctor is often typical). This may be a disadvantage to patients, empathy and quality of care can sometimes be compromised. The staff usually gets paid the same regardless if patients receive poor or outstanding care. I personally know or have had contact with at least 12 doctors, nurses or other medical staff that I would consider dangerous: profit motivated, incompetent, dishonest, lazy or apathetic, sarcastic or abusive, mentally disturbed or drug abusers. Most of these people did not have a name tag and supplied me with a first name only when asked for a name. In my opinion one of my neighbors is a mentally ill traveling nurse that is extremely unstable and dangerous. I am now sure modern medicine sometimes protects the guilty and incompetent, also sometimes victimizes the naive patients. I now understand why medical mistakes are the third leading cause of deaths in the USA. I now believe some or most of the deaths and injuries are preventable and sometimes intentional. Medical workers can know everything about a patient, hide behind anonymity, do patients irreversible harm or death. The patient may not even know his or her first name. TV, movies and sometimes the public idolize doctors, nurses and caregivers; however the healthcare profession has about the same amount of abusive or incompetent workers as other occupations. I have also had excellent doctors and nurses; however this may not protect us from the incompetent ones. What are the reasons nurses get fired: 1. Prescription drug abuse (because of easy access to drugs 10 to 20% 4 and up to 24% use drugs). 2. Too many mistakes. 3. Code of conduct and privacy violations. 3. Bad attitude. 4. No proper licenses 5. Abuse of patients. If they get fired often incompetent health care workers can just find another job, without any repercussions. 100,000 doctors, nurses, and others are abusing prescription drugs every year. A career in the medical field can sometimes present opportunities for drug addicts, the profit motivated, sadists, misogynist, misandrist (man haters), narcissists, psychopaths, voyeurs, perverts, and occasionally rapists and serial killers. Patients in nursing homes are most vulnerable to abuse. Employee screening is often deficient. Patients should be aware that sometimes QOL (quality of life) may be secondary or an absent goal in treatment. Sometimes overtreatment for profit or to prevent an unlikely death or metastization from low-risk cancer may be the primary or the only goals of prostate cancer treatment. Many men may not be prepared for or have unrealistic expectations about the outcome, physical and psychological impact of testing and treatment.
Depression in prostate cancer patients is common, 27% and 22% at 5 years 6 and for advanced prostate cancer patient’s depression is even higher. Prostate cancer patients are at an increased risk of suicide. The use of antidepressants increase after prostate cancer treatment. Men are seldom screened for anxiety and depression after treatment. Suicides occurred 2.51 to 4 times more often in prostate cancer patients. Antidepressants and anti-anxiety drugs can have multiple side effects and strong withdrawals symptoms.

The risk of chronic or permanent fatigue (that can result in depression and suicide) is often understated if disclosed at all. Per some studies and depending on your treatment; the risk of chronic fatigue is about 25% to 60%. Radiation with ADT therapy has a high risk of fatigue.

Conventional prostate cancer testing and treatment, Quackery, butchery and Frankenstein medicine? Castration (orchiectomy), ADT therapy (chemical castration), LDR Brachytherapy, radical cryotherapy, surgery, chemotherapy and blind biopsies are often dangerous, psychically and emotionally brutal, traumatic and disturbing. In my opinion, these types of treatments are primitive and almost beyond belief in today’s world of advanced technology. It seems all of the best treatments for prostate cancer have not been approved and some are only available outside the USA. Newer treatments like HIFU, hyperthermia, Conexus, Nanoparticles, Boron Neutron capture therapy, CBD and THC, Gold Nanoparticles, PARP Inhibitors, Platinum, focal ablation (laser, IRE Therapy) and orphan drugs (dichloroacetate, etc) should be approved and used when appropriate. It often takes years or decades for new treatments to be approved. If no profit is to be made as in orphan drugs, no approval should be expected. Biopsies should be limited to selective MRI guided samples only; blind biopsies should never be performed. Per some studies vitamin D3 may prevent prostate cancer from becoming aggressive 16. Newer prostate cancer testing and treatment is available in the USA at some locations. I have no affiliations with any of them. Look for IRE, Laser or focal Ablation and no blind biopsies. I have listed one location as a reference:

Prostate Radiotherapy, Damage from radiation can increase over time- the gift that keeps on giving:(EBRT-external beam radiation therapy) for cancer treatment. New technology consists of Proton, IMRT, SBRT, IGRT, VMAT, TrueBeam, Cyberknife, etc. This newer, faster, more accurate and easier to set up radiation equipment is of much benefit for doctors, staff and a good selling point to patients. However, as far as reducing long-term side effects a patient should be extremely skeptical if exaggerated claims are made about reduced long-term side effects, especially fatigue and multiple forms of sexual dysfunction from newer equipment. Radiotherapy can cause hip and bone problems later in life. 44% decreased orgasm intensity and multiple forms of sexual dysfunction [8,21]. Low volume and discolored semen. Patients should inquire as to the treatment plan: Gy dose and fractions, margins, testicular dose, constraints and age of radiotherapy equipment to ensure excessive radiation exposure treatment is not given that can result in additional side effects. Patients should be aware that pelvic shaving, permanent tattoo markers, fiducial marker (small seeds) are sometimes placed in the prostate, MRI, CT scan, photographs, catheters and other procedures may or may not be required. Radiotherapy can also occasionally result in secondary cancers and damage to “organs at risk” (organs close to the prostate). Some of the studies on proton therapy and ED are biased because they only include men under 60 years old. Radiation has a high probability of sexual dysfunction and fatigue, just as high with the newer equipment. ED rates estimated at 35% to 75% or higher, 93% at 15 years [8,14,21]. Sometimes radiation can also cause bowel and urinary problems. A 5 day SBRT radiation treatment is now commonly available with about the same results and side effects as a 9 week radiation treatment. A doctor with a multimillion-dollar lease and maintenance agreement on radiotherapy equipment and a large staff may or may not be influenced by his or her financial obligations when deciding to recommend over testing and treatment.

Fried nuts, two: Prostate radiotherapy (EBRT/SBRT) can sometimes result in a 5% to 30% or more temporary or permanent drop in testosterone levels, excluding hormone therapy. This drop is determined by the testicular radiation dose (treatment equipment and planning) [19,20]. A below normal drop in testosterone can result in fatigue, depression, sexual dysfunction, weight gain and other symptoms. Always ask for a printout of testicle dose and constraints for prostate radiotherapy to ensure your testicles are not over-radiated, also include the CT scan exposures. With radiotherapy robotic arm equipment and the testicles included in the treatment field can result in a major drop in testosterone. If your being treated with robotic arm radiotherapy equipment demand “Testicular Avoidance (TA) beam arrangements”. Have your testosterone levels tested before and months after any EBRT prostate treatment.

Chemotherapy can be extremely toxic and sometimes deadly: Any cancer patient (man or woman) who are being offered chemotherapy should be particularly cautious. Without proof of the effectiveness of the specific chemo drug being used on the exact cancer type being treated, chemotherapy can often be more toxic to the patient than to the cancer. Chemotherapy may be extremely expensive, profitable for some doctors (if dispensed by the doctor and not by a third party) and can be misused or overused, often for profit. The “chemotherapy concession”: A doctor may purchase a quantity of chemo drugs for $10,000 and charge a patient $20,000. A doctor can also receive a percent kickback from the drug company for prescribing the drugs. This is a well documented and common practice. Per some studies: 75% of physicians in the world would refuse chemotherapy if they had cancer and Chemotherapy may have a high failure rate. One Michigan oncologist who committed fraud and gave $35 million in needless chemotherapy (for profit) to patients, some who did not even have cancer is now in jail for 45 years. He was running his own in-house pharmacy. The nursing staff was indifferent and the state regulatory agency initially cleared him of any wrongdoing (a cover-up). Some chemo drugs are considered a biohazard.

Long-term care for side effects is often lacking, exploitive, costly or ineffective: Long-term care consists of regular PSA testing for years. Long-term side effects often consist of fatigue, bowel or urinary problems, sexual dysfunction, depression, isolation and sometimes suicide. Patients with complaints of chronic fatigue are often told to exercise, get plenty of sleep, pace yourself and eat a healthy diet; this advice is of limited help for chronic fatigue. Often treatments for long-term side effects are embarrassing, degrading, unavailable, nonexistent, costly, not effective, not offered or bothersome. Billions of dollars are profited from ED drug and other ED products, catheters, pads and diapers, drugs for depression, pain, insomnia or incontinence, additional treatments and surgeries for side effects. Also, treatments for the side effects from hormone ADT therapy (chemical castration) are sometimes required.

Men, aging, exploitation and elder abuse: The elderly are the ideal victims for profiteers, scammers, sadists, etc. If any man lives long enough it is very likely he will have a prostate problem, low testosterone or some form of sexual dysfunction. In my opinion, modern medicine has often been exploitive, abusive and has provided substandard care for older men in general due to all of the explanation given in this text. I believe much of the attitudes toward older Americans need improvement and they are sometimes viewed as being subhuman and exploitable by various groups and individuals. If documented cases of unnecessary surgery and radiotherapy or blind biopsies on children by doctors for profit were released, the vast majority of Americans would be outraged and this practice would quickly end. However for older men it does not seems to be of any great concern! It is well documented that all forms of abuse do occur to the elderly and disabled in nursing homes and other facilities including neglect, theft, starvation, torture, harassment, sexual assault, etc. Elderly are being exploited in many ways. One patient after recovering from a brain injury testified that he was repeatedly abused, slapped and hit, forced to drink boiling hot tea by multiple caregivers and sexually assaulted by one female caregiver. I personally know of an elderly lady that is living in an expensive assisted living home that has had all of her possessions (radio, clothes, underwear, shoes, bed sheets) repeatedly stolen and replaced by her family. Scams for profit: Guardian scam, if you are declared incompetent by strangers, they can become your guardian (Guardianships and Conservatorships). You can be forced to move into a nursing home and your property can be sold and your assets can be seized by them. In other words-they can steal your assets and incarcerate you. Some predators are becoming very wealthy by using this exploitation method. Make sure you have an estate trust, executor, etc 24. AARP magazine, October/November, page 62, A Legal Hostage.

Avoid the drug company rip off. No more exploitation!: Almost all conventional prostate cancer treatments usually result in a high percentage of erectile dysfunction. Often claims of prompt effective treatment for ED or other side effects if they occur after treatment are often misleading. After treatment, ED estimates are deceptive because rates are given after the use of ED drugs. Without ED drugs, ED rates are about double. Statistics for ED percentages from treatment are usually quoted after treatment with Viagra or other ED drugs, therefore most statistics are very misleading. ED rated at 3 years may be as high as 50% to 80% or higher for most treatments. ED rated at 15 years may be as high as 90% or higher for most treatments. For cryotherapy, ED rates are extremely high. The cost for ED drugs like Levitra, Cialis, Viagra and Muse are deliberately kept very expensive by drug companies, about $9 to $60 per 1 pill or dose. Generic PDE5I ED drugs in Canada and other parts of the world sell for about $0.50 to $2 a pill. 2 ED creams have been developed however they have not been approved for use in the USA and they may never be approved. Men are also exploited by counterfeit mail order ED drug sales. ED treatments can also be embarrassing, not offered, not practical, expensive/not covered by insurance. 80% of men will not seek treatment because or these reasons. You can get safe, inexpensive, quality generic and brand name drugs from Canada. Just get a prescription from any doctor and make sure the Canada pharmacy is CIPA licensed. Generic Cialis and Viagra for about $0.50 to $2 a pill and other drugs too. Go to for a list of trusted CIPA Canadian pharmacies. Stop getting ripped off by American drug companies.

The numbers game, you lose. More exaggerations and lies: After cancer treatment, ED estimates are deceptive because rates are given after the treatment with ED drugs. Without ED drugs, ED percentages are substantially higher (e.g. 50% ED with ED drugs, 75% ED without ED drugs is often common). In my opinion it’s just deceptive. Similar deceptive tactics also apply to incontinence percentages. A doctor may state a patients chances of ED is about 35% with EBRT radiotherapy (or some other treatment). A patient may think, 35% is not too bad and if I do get ED I can always take Viagra. What a doctor may not tell a patient is that the ED rate is 35% at 1 or 2 years for a patient under 65 years old and with an ED drug treatment option. For a patient over 4 years, over 65 years old and no ED drugs the ED rate may be about 75% or higher. After age 70 your chances of ED is over 85% or higher 8. ED rates are seldom quotes at 5 or 10 years after treatment because they are so bad. Obviously, a man is more likely to refuse treatment at a 75% ED rate versus a 35% ED rate. Results are often worse for a surgery option. With both treatments together or with ADT hormones you’re in real trouble with ED percentages. Some side effects may not be disclosed at all. If side effects (low libido, increased risk of peyronie’s disease, chronic fatigue, depression, increased suicide risk, etc) are not disclosed, no percentages will usually be quoted. Suicides occurred 2.51 to 4 times more often in prostate cancer patients. Cure rates are often quoted at the 5 years mark for most treatments. 5 years is not a magic number, anyone can have a treatment failure before or after 5 years. The cure rate for your treatment at 5 years may be quoted at 85%; however, the cure rate at 8 to10 years may be only 50%. The 85% at 5 year rate was quoted to me. I was never told about my 50% at 10 year cure rate. For an estimate of your cure rate go to and input your treatment (remember an intermediate “unfavorable” Gleason 7 4+3 is almost the same as a high-risk Gleason 8). Always ask what is the “biochemical recurrence” (AKA rising PSA or treatment failure) rate for well beyond 5 years with your computer software simulation and Partin tables. Ask your urologist or oncologist for a 10 year cure Rate. If the physician is unable to provide one, consider finding another doctor. Studies, side effects percentage claims, etc can be biased Watch out for terms like “age-adjusted” or ambiguous or excluded facts as given in the above examples. I have read and have been given some extremely exaggerated claims (mostly lies) concerning cure rated, side effects, etc. Do not believe some of the biased internet information and some of the flawed statistics, because they include low risk (fake) prostate cancer.

Cancer Survivor or The Walking Dead: After a blind biopsy and conventional treatment men can be left impotent, incontinent, fatigued, sterile, exploited, embarrassed, isolated, deceived or mislead, devastated, demoralized, depressed, with ruined relationships, possibly feminized or chemically castrated or literally castrated, Increased use of antidepressants, suicidal, low libido, stressed, severe distress, left with complications, sometimes financially harmed or ruined, sometimes radiated or radioactive. And sometimes literally dead. Loss of libido estimated at about 45% or higher, excluding hormone therapy. After testing and treatment your life may be very deferent. Prostate cancer patients can be elderly and exploited for profit [1,5,9,10,25]. Aftercare for long-term side effects can be ineffective, expensive, not offered, degrading, demoralizing, lacking or nonexistent. Prostate cancer patients are often not told about chronic fatigue, depression, increased risk of peyronie’s disease, loss of libido and the true risk of side effects are often understated. Some men can even get PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)Your dignity, privacy and confidentiality can be disregarded. Your records can be downloaded to multiple servers. You and your medical records can be viewed by several people. Modern medicine can fail, victimizes and exploit prostate cancer patients. Treatment failures are common at 8 or 10 years for unfavorable intermediate and high risk patients.

Often few good choices exist for treatment: Some medical professionals want you to go get your conventional prostate cancer testing and treatment without excessive opposition. A prostate cancer patient treatment choice often ends up being the least worst choice or the choice with the side effects a patient thinks he can tolerate. If a patient has intermediate or high-risk prostate cancer and does not have advanced age he may need treatment. He should look into other newer treatments if available. Also, he should try and avoid hormone therapy if possible because of the multiple side effects especially if the cancer is organ-confined. If laser or other newer treatments are not available a 5 day SBRT radiation treatment may be considered (In my opinion SBRT could be the least worst of the bad choices, still a poor option). SBRT seems to be fast, least invasive. ED and fatigue are still a high long-term risk. Radiation with hormone therapy has a very higher risk of ED and long-term fatigue.

My story (My exploitation and abuse): I went to see my doctor for a checkup. He had a 16-year-old girl and a 17-year-old boy high school interns that reside in the neighborhood looking over patient records (with full access to all records) working in his office for the summer. I consider this to be a privacy and confidentiality issue/violation. His longtime medical assistant was going through a nasty divorce and it appeared to be affecting her performance and my care. My doctor referred me out to his urologist friend because of my high PSA. I will refer to the urologist as Doctor “A”; he used old and dangerous testing technology (18 core blind biopsies), his nurse seemed to have a mental defect exhibiting arrogant, rude, strange and abusive behavior and was intent on inflicting psychological and possibly physical harm to me. Shortly after my Dr. “A” visits ended, his nurse was no longer employed at his office and no person in that office would refer to her employment or her existence. I now believe this nurse was under the influence of drugs because drug abuse is common among nurses (easy access to drugs) 4. I was diagnosed with prostate cancer by Dr. “A”. I was given a book by Dr. “A” (see the paragraph below “the book with no happy ending”) I refused Dr. “A” surgery and hormone therapy recommendation because of the imminent side effects and his unprofessional (arrogant, rude, strange, sarcastic and abusive) nurse behavior, so Dr. “A” referred me to Dr “T”. Dr. “T” was outside of my insurance network; however, his office manager stated she was willing to work with my insurance, offered me a doctor consultation and would accept any insurance payment as a full payment. When I arrived in his office the waiting room was empty and Dr. “T” had a large staff. Dr. “T” used older conventional technology (old equipment, 9-week radiotherapy), offered me overtreatment, hormone therapy, bone scan (unnecessary procedures and testes). One week after my consultation with Dr. “T” I received an $850 bill, in conflict with what was agreed upon with his office manager. After a recommendation from an acquaintance, I called clinic “O” and met with the nurse. She offered me treatments with a verbal guarantee of “no side effects from the SBRT radiation”. However, this nurse could not answer any of my basic questions lacked any credibility and sounded like an unscrupulous used car salesmen. Most of these office visits caused me multiple problems with office workers processing paperwork for tests, insurance forms and billing, etc. Two of these doctors offered me an unnecessary bone scan. Two of these doctors recommended unnecessary hormone therapy ADT (overtreatment) for my organ-confined cancer. After I absolutely and utterly refused hormone therapy, both doctors admitted it probably would not help me in my final outcome because of the computer estimate run on me with my organ-confined cancer. Having no newer treatments (laser, etc) available to me at that time, I decided on SBRT treatment with Dr. “K”, he could answer my questions and had new equipment. Before my treatment could start I was referred to “W” lab for an MRI. “W” lab had a trainee assisting and it took over 3 hours to complete my MRI. 2 days later after receiving my MRI report, I examined it and it had my name and some other patient history information. I wasted 2 stressful days verifying it was the correct MRI of me and not some other prostate patients MRI before my treatment could start. I did receive treatment from Dr. “K”. I did have a relatively fast and noninvasive treatment (SBRT), resulting in several months of fatigue, a large PSA bounce 18 months later. I still have ongoing problems obtaining PSA lab request forms from my radiologist’s office. I feel this entire ordeal aged me and I’m not sure what the future will bring? I also no longer trust modern medicine, doctors, nurses, etc. Modern medicine seems to be more of a gamble than a science. I have wasted hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars. I feel modern medicine has violated my confidentiality (see the paragraph-Mandatory privacy breaches), abused and failed me (and others) due to the lack of guidelines and regulation, still approved obsolete technology, better unapproved treatments, exploitation, greed, apathy and incompetence. Hindsight is 20/20. If I could do it over again, I would also consider no PSA testing and treatment or traveling for newer treatments from a competent provider if practical and available. I believe if I did take the two doctors recommendations and received unnecessary ADT hormone therapy in addition to the radiotherapy my quality of life (QOL) would have been severely impacted for years or permanently and could possibly have resulting in my early death.

“First, do no harm”, unless you can make a lot of money and get away with it: A number of medical staff I came into contact with seemed intent on doing me harm. I was harmed physically by Dr. “A” 18 core blind biopsy and verbally abused by his sadistic nurse. I was potentially exploited and financially harmed ($850) by Dr. “T” and offered unnecessary testing and overtreatment. Clinic “O” nurse attempted to misinform and deceive me about the treatment outcome of “SBRT treatment with no long-term side effects”. I was harmed by “W” lab by mistakes and incompetence. I did also have numerous other billing and paperwork problems probably due to mistakes and apathy. I was also harmed by the release of my cancer files by my state cancer registry and SEER as explained above. A few office staff were incapable of completing some very simple tasks like filling out lab work request or insurance forms. At least 40% (probably substantially more, 50% to 60%) of the healthcare workers I came into contact with did or attempted to do some form of harm to me or provide substandard care, attempted excessive testing and treatment, mistakes, billing overcharges, blind biopsy, false statements, deception, misinformation, apathy and abusive behavior, as explained in this text. I have also observed several medical facilities do not require workers to wear name tags and when asked for a name most will give a first name only; this may also be a factor in healthcare workers not acting in an ethical manner. It seems that this prostate cancer nightmare maze was intended to be demoralizing and be of maximum physical, psychological and financial harm. Also to be of questionable benefit and to be of utmost profit for doctors. My prostate cancer experience has been one of the worst events that has happened to me in my lifetime. Also seeking testing and treatment is one of the biggest mistakes I have ever made. I specifically hold responsible modern medicine for not protecting patients from predatory doctors, substandard technology and a lack of regulations that would protect patients. I would have probably been better off going to a Voodoo or witch doctor. I would have saved thousands of dollars, time, had no side effects, no paperwork, more confidentiality, privacy and less abuse. I could have received better advice? I could have received a nice amulet or a good luck charm to protect against sorcery and magic (conventional prostate testing and treatment) and evil medicine men and witches (predatory doctors, incompetent and abusive staff). [13,4]

My (lack of a good) treatment choice: Because castration (orchiectomy), ADT therapy (chemical castration), prostatectomy, Chemotherapy, LDR Brachytherapy and blind biopsies are what I consider quackery, butchery and Frankenstein medicine (often outdated, harmful, strange, bizarre, brutal, twisted, degrading or a perverted nightmare) I would avoid all of them. Unfortunately, I was deceived into having a 18 core blind biopsy. I do not believe other conventional treatments like radiotherapy are good or great choices either, just not as horrific. The choice I made was a 5 day SBRT radiotherapy. A 5 day SBRT also has numerous drawbacks and side effects, about the same as a 9 week EBRT radiotherapy. I also had no newer treatment options available to me. As I have stated above, If I could do it over again I would also consider either no PSA testing and treatment or traveling for newer treatments from a competent provider if practical and available. I am now sure I made the wrong choice by receiving conventional testing and treatment. Per multiple experts: Prostate cancer testing and treatment is often worse than the disease. I was also the victim of profit motivated and substandard providers. 3 years later I now believe my prostate cancer testing and treatment greatly accelerated my ageing (through the stress, testing, treatments and physically from the radiation and was also a financial burden costing me thousands of dollars. Per new EBRT studies my intermediate Gleason 7, 4+3 score is now considered “unfavorable” 7. I now have about a 50% chance of a treatment failure in 8 to 10 years. My previous long-term cure rate was originally quoted at 85% before my treatment started. I am also sure prostate cancer testing and treatment is mostly smoke and mirrors (lies). The man who invented the PSA test, Dr. Richard Ablin now calls it: the Great Prostate Mistake, Hoax and a Profit-Driven Public Health Disaster1. When asked: “How did you live so long?” A 99-year-old woman stated, “Stay away from doctors and don’t take anything they prescribe for you”. With exceptions, I now believe this advice to be mostly true.

The Book with no happy ending: In my opinion. After I was diagnosed with prostate cancer the doctor gave me a book written by a female. It generally contained conventional hazardous prostate cancer testing and treatments with multiple side effects. No mention of harm from a blind biopsy or focal ablation treatments (new testing and treatment) in this book. This book also contained potentially harmful misinformation. If you read it with attentiveness this book seemed subjective, had some incorrect information, it also had unnecessary demeaning and demoralizing content. I am not sure if this book was intended to cause anxiety, to devalue and misinform men to accept conventional testing and treatment without question? Legalities and copyright infringement prevent me from giving any details.

Always protect yourself: Conventional prostate cancer care is often hazardous. Do not let the sterile, friendly and professional environment of a doctor’s office detour you from protecting yourself from any unnecessary life changing over tests and treatments. If you are concerned about misuse or privacy issues, refuse to fill out EPIC questioners and limit the information given to relevant information only. If you have a high PSA or prostate cancer, educate yourself. A patient should be extremely skeptical if exaggerated claims are made about minimal long-term side effects from conventional treatments or blind biopsies, exaggerated cure rates or the need for immediate treatment. Bring someone educated or astute with you to your consultations and appointments. Inquire about newer testing if you have prostate cancer. Avoid doctors that are mostly profit motivated. Do not submit to a prostate blind biopsy. Get a second or third opinion if you are being offered treatment with low-risk prostate cancer or have a short lifespan. Learn about all your treatment options, testing and side effects. Verify everything you are told. Under the HIPAA law, you are entitled to a copy of all your medical records and bills. Always ask the name of the person assisting you. Get a copy and keep a file of your test results, biopsy report, Gleason score, PSA, MRI report, treatment plan, bills, insurance payouts, etc. Carefully monitor your PSA. Expect a temporary increase (for weeks or months) in PSA after some procedures. Verify the accuracy of paperwork. If treatment is necessary talk to your doctor in advance about side effect management, chronic fatigue, ED, depression, etc. Doctors that provide treatments often have computer software to predict the outcome using test results and different treatment options. Ask to see your computer predicted cure rate outcome with your treatment options if available. This may give you some insight into your options, cure rate and also to avoid overtreatment. Always ask what is the “biochemical recurrence” (AKA rising PSA or treatment failure) rate for well beyond 5 years. 5 years is not a magic number. Get a 10 year cure estimate. For help contact a good prostate cancer support group without a conflict of interest. A wise man once told me: You need to learn to think like your doctors (nurses or other providers). What are the motives of your providers?

A medical holocaust: Multiple studies have verified more deaths and harm caused by prostate cancer testing and treatment than from prostate cancer itself. Medical mistakes are the third leading cause of deaths in the USA, More then suicide, firearms and motor vehicle accidents combined 13. Yearly 8.8 million hospital patients suffer from needless harm and 440,000 hospital patients die because of errors or hospital acquired infections. Per the FDA, 106,000 deaths per year (Over one million people in 10 years) from prescription drugs. July is when medical students graduate and begin residencies. It is the most dangerous month to visit a hospital, deaths due to errors spike by 10%. Patients who are under a general anesthesia are extremely vulnerable, exposed and defenseless; sometimes exploited, abused, neglected or taken advantage of (see a patients dignity). I personally know of 2 patients killed by medical mistakes, one got hepatitis from a colonoscopy and the other death from an upset ER nurse forcing a tube down his throat causing lethal damage.

Your privacy and confidentiality is often just an illusion: Under the HIPAA law, all access to your records is allegedly by a “Need to know” basis only and you have a “right to know” what is in your records. This is all lie. Cancer reporting is mandated by law (excluding skin cancer). All patient (cancer and non-cancer patients) can have files duplicated (downloaded) numerous times by multiple databases. HIPAA has numerous loopholes and exceptions. State laws override HIPAA federal laws, so HIPAA can sometimes be rendered worthless. Even excluding violations, HIPAA will often not protect your privacy. Many privacy statements are convoluted and confusing. By law cancer registry files cannot be sealed, deleted and may not be protected from access. Privacy laws can sometimes shield doctors, nurses, hospitals and insurance companies from investigations, lawsuits, etc. Prostate cancer patients are asked to fill out a series of EPIC questionnaires or other forms. The EPIC questionnaire asks several intimate details about patient’s sex life, urinary and bowl function. By a prostate cancer patient completing an EPIC questionnaire he may be able to assist his doctor, nurse, office workers or multiple databases track his progress or decline. By refusing to fill out these forms and supplying relevant information only he can help ensure his privacy and ensure he does not unknowingly become part of a study, survey or have his information forwarded to multiple databases. The EPIC questionnaire is deficient because it does not address fatigue or depression. Most of the time a patient has no idea who has access to medical records or why the records are being looked at. Probably everyone that works in a medical office or building has access to the records, except you (often you the patient may have limited or no access without a formal request). Often a patient is not allowed to touch, handle or look at their own records. File access may include non-medical employees, office workers, bookkeepers, janitors, insurance companies, college or high school interns as young as 15 years old and sometimes as young as 14. This may include other facilities, programmers, cancer registries, researchers (clinical trial), drug companies, students, government agencies, etc. Often records are placed on a Health Information Exchange (HIE) or servers. Dozens, sometimes even hundreds or thousands or more people may have access to medical records. Major databases like SEER (Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results) and state cancer registers and its contractors, partners, institutions, etc are linked to Medicare records to determine “end results” for researchers, studies, drug company clinical trial offers, etc. Almost anyone could have access to your records. SEER and cancer registry’s are just some of many databases. Servers, both government and private are sharing information. Also “health surveillance” and “data mining”. Health information may be shared by millions of entities and servers all over the USA and sometimes the world. Records may be packaged with others and offered for sale, this does often happen on “the dark web”. If a doctor, patient, insurance company, pharmacy or lab is involved in a criminal or civil case; medical records may become public court or law enforcement records. Financial and medical Identity theft is also a problem, often expensive and difficult to correct. Hacking and Ransomware is also a growing problem. Your records can be accessed by anyone (trainees, volunteers, college or high school interns as young as 15 years old and sometimes 14) “for training purposes” or any other reason, all without your knowledge or consent. They can also read records about your prostate problems, your wife’s hemorrhoids and your daughters yeast infections and all files for any patient, all within the HIPAA guidelines. Would you like to have a 16 year old high school student intern that perhaps lives in your neighborhood or attends school with your children read over your extensive family member’s medical records and personal information? Sometimes High school interns can even watch major surgeries. These people do not have to be employed by the facility or have a background check. All patients should avoid supplying unnecessary information whenever possible. Supply relevant information only when filling out forms. Identity theft is common, growing problem and is often financially devastating. It is seldom a requirement to provide your social security number on medical forms. If you are asked for it, require justification before providing it. Medical forms can be a good source of information for thieves. A pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) can track your prescriptions. Drug companies use major databases to solicit people for clinical trials and product. Even without violations, records can be accessed by multiple people and appear in multiple databases. Sometimes medical phone calls are recorded. Often the medical field has little regard for our dignity and privacy, especially if it is in conflict with training, research, studies, profit or other objectives. If you are a celebrity or you are known to anyone with access to your records (neighbor, acquaintance, co-workers spouse, high school intern, etc) they would possibly (or probably) want to have a look at your medical records. In May, 2017 Dear Abby did an article on this subject, “Snooping into medical records”. Sometimes your paper records end up in the trash for any dumpster diver to recover. The best way to protect information is not to divulge it. If your concerned about internet privacy you may want to download some free apps for your PC: search engine, Epic privacy browser, SUPERAntiSpyware Free Edition, Malwarebytes or other privacy software.

Mandatory privacy breaches: Months after my cancer treatments ended I started receiving disturbing advertisements and clinical trial offer in the form of postcards and letters. The SEER database staff referred to my state cancer registry. After some investigating, I learned: 1. Per HIPAA and state laws cancer reporting is mandatory (excluding skin cancer). 2. By law, your cancer records cannot be deleted or sealed and are often not protected. 3. HIPAA has numerous exceptions and loopholes. 4. Anyone with a reason can apply for access to all cancer records in the database. Multiple names with unknown backgrounds can be submitted by one person. 5. Researchers, students and others can have immediate access to your records however if you want a copy you will be required to fill out forms and verify your identity. 6. Cancer Registry WebPages will tell you “Your information is safe” and “your information is de-identified” and how very important your privacy is to them. This is all lies. The convoluted disclosures, advertisements and clinical trial offers will indicate otherwise. The only deterrent a patient can try is submitting a formal opt-out request for clinical trials to his or her state cancer registry. However, this may only give partial confidentiality. The responsibility will be left to the patient to submit the request, the patient will not be informed or contacted by the registry otherwise.

A patient’s dignity (or lack of dignity): Prostate cancer testing and treatment is stressful, degrading, demoralizing and embarrassing. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), per one study 80% of men with ED never talk to their doctors or seek treatment because of these reasons. After his surgery, one patient stated his prostate and his dignity was both removed and discarded. Your dignity and privacy often has a low priority at several medical facilities. In 45 states, doctors, nurses and medical students are legally allowed to give unnecessary urinary catheters, pelvic exams and other procedures on patients who are under anesthesia without being given explicit consent to do so, for both men and women patients. Sometimes multiple times by a number of students for training purposes or any other reason. You may want to avoid a teaching hospital for numerous reasons or other facilities that practice violating you in this manner. Doctors are often encouraged to over treat in hospitals. EPIC questionnaires can be counterproductive impact a patient’s dignity, privacy and confidentiality. The EPIC questionnaire is not a requirement to fill out and the term “strictly confidential” can be misleading. One patient told me he filled out and turned in his “strictly confidential” EPIC questioners only to have every female office staff member read it and ogle him. Only one of them had any involvement in his care. He stated that he became very uncomfortable and discontinued his appointments. Female nurses do harassing and discriminate against male nurses. Data or studies on female nurses (misandrist) abusing male patients is limited. Many women prefer or will only see female doctors. Almost all gynecologists will only employ female staff. Over half of men prefer a male doctor. Per some respected doctors: Many men still avoid medical care because of embarrassment and Honest answers will often not be given if asked by a female. Per some studies, a significant percentage of men will feel uncomfortable or will completely avoid medical care if a female doctor, nurse or staff member provided it for prostate problems, incontinence, ED, etc. This can result in embarrassment, awkward conversations, unasked questions, deafening silence and canceled appointments. Some men would prefer illness, no treatment and sometimes even death over embarrassment. Per one survey 10% of men at some time have been abused or had inappropriate comments by doctors and nurses. Some men are more likely to seek or accept medical care for personal health issues if the staff (point of contact) is male 26. Yet modern medicine still insists on using the same old flawed traditions and procedures.

No national guidelines: A prostate cancer patient “bill of rights” is needed. Strict guidelines need to be created and enforced because of the extensive and documented abuses of prostate cancer patients: 1. Blind biopsies should be banned. 2. Strict guidelines for testing and treatment need to be created. 3. Full mandatory industry standard disclosure needs to be created for tests and treatment to include realistic risk factors and all side effects listed. 4. Newer testing and treatments need to be created and approved. 5. Dignity, privacy and confidentiality need to be standardized and enforced in addition to the deficient HIPAA laws. 6. Mandatory aftercare needs to be available, standardized and regulated. Screening for fatigue and depression need to be mandatory. 7. The cost of drugs needs to be regulated to end financial exploitation by drug companies. 8. Medical workers should be identifiable and be required to wear legible name tags with first, last names and job title. 9. A new standard “Ethical Code of Conduct” needs to be created and enforced to end patient exploitation and abuse. 10. Mandatory drug testing for employees with access to control substances. 11. A truthful and accurate standardized educational book or PDF needs to be created and distributed to all high PSA and prostate cancer patients. 12. Ban for-profit ADT therapy and the “chemotherapy concession”. 13. A database needs to be created to track and ban dangerous or incompetent health care workers to break the cycle of abuse. 14. All health care workers need to be screen (for crime, drug abuse and mental illness) and no adolescent under 18 years old should have contact with patients or records. 15. Explicit consent needs to be given for all testes, exams and procedures for patients who are under anesthesia. It is unlikely any of the above recommendations will be implemented unless prostate cancer affected a larger percent of the population or enough prominent people are affected. Prostate cancer patients must protect themselves as the only alternative!

Clarification: This document has angered and upset some people for various reasons. Per my experiences; some prostate cancer support group members, advocates and others are trying to spread the truth and others are attempting to suppress the truth. If you do not have a short lifespan and have metastatic, advanced, intermediate or high-risk prostate cancer you may need treatment. The intent of this document is not to imply all doctors are dishonest or to condemn all medical providers. The intent is to educate men of the consequences and dangers that may await them so they can take appropriate action and to inform patients of real world, typical or worst case scenarios. Also to obtain the best testing and treatments available. I created this document after I was extensively abused, exploited, lied to, provided substandard care and had my privacy and confidentiality violated. I have tried to include most scenarios a prostate cancer patient should be cautious of. Would some health care providers harm a patient for profit or by accident or some other reason? Yes, absolutely! Shockingly, for me it was well over 40% (probably 50% to 60%) that intended to do me some form of harm or provided substandard care as explained in my story. Are some other doctors and nurses exceptional? Yes! I have also had excellent doctors and nurses, however this may not protect you or I from the incompetent ones.

I have been extensively misquoted, harassed and criticized by some for creating this document and its blunt content. In order to ensure my privacy, confidentiality and avoid any potential reprisals, further abuse or exploitation, I will remain Anonymous.

1. Hardcover book, The Great Prostate Hoax: How Big Medicine Hijacked the PSA Test and Caused a Public Health Disaster. by Richard Ablin (Inventor of the PSA test).
3. World J Mens Health. 2017 Apr; 35(1): 1–13. Published 2017 Apr 26. Orgasmic Dysfunction after Radical Prostatectomy. Paolo Capogrosso.
4. Addressing Chemically Dependent Colleagues. Kathy Bettinardi-Angres, Stephanie Bologeorges. J Nurs Regulation. 2011;2(2):10-17.
5. Medscape Urology WebMD: Mortality Risk With Prostate Biopsy Raises Concern – Medscape – Jun 17, 2013.
6. British Journal of Cancer (2006) 94, 1093 – 1098 & 2006 Cancer Research UK. Anxiety and depression after prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment: 5-year follow-up.
7. Alan Katz. Original research published: 08 July 2016. Predicting Biochemical Disease-Free survival after Prostate stereotactic Body radiotherapy: risk-stratification and Patterns of Failure.
9. L. Klotz. Curr Opin Endocrinol Diabetes Obes. 2013 Jun;20(3):204-9. Prostate cancer overdiagnosis and overtreatment.
10. Loeb, S. Eur Urol. 2014 Jun; 65(6): 1046–1055. Overdiagnosis and Overtreatment of Prostate Cancer.
11. Loeb, S. J Urol. 2013 Mar; 189(3): 867–870. Is Repeat Prostate Biopsy Associated with a Greater Risk of Hospitalization? Data from SEER-Medicare.
12. The new England journal of medicine. October 13, 2016 vol. 375 no. 15. 10-Year Outcomes after Monitoring, Surgery, or Radiotherapy for Localized Prostate Cancer.
13. BMJ 2016; 353 doi: (Published 03 May 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;353:i2139. Medical error—the third leading cause of death in the US.
14. Matthew J. Resnick. N Engl J Med 2013; 368:436-445 January 31, 2013 Long-Term Functional Outcomes after Treatment for Localized Prostate Cancer
15. JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute, Volume 97, Issue 20, 19 October 2005, Pages 1525–1532. 30-Day Mortality and Major Complications after Radical Prostatectomy: Influence of Age and Comorbidity.
16. Rev Urol. 2004 Spring; 6(2): 95–97. Vitamin D for the Management of Prostate Cancer. Masood A Khan.
17. Reimbursement Policy and Androgen-Deprivation Therapy for Prostate Cancer Vahakn B. Shahinian, M.D., Yong-Fang Kuo, Ph.D., and Scott M. Gilbert, M.D. N Engl J Med 2010; 363:1822-1832November 4, 2010
18. Medicare Reimbursement and Prescribing Hormone Therapy for Prostate Cancer Nancy L. Keating. JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute, Volume 102, Issue 24, 15 December 2010, Pages 1814–1815.
19. Testicular Dose in Prostate Cancer Radiotherapy. Article in Strahlentherapie und Onkologie • April 2005.
20. J Hematol Oncol. 2011; 4: 12. 2011 Mar 27. Low incidence of new biochemical and clinical hypogonadism following hypofractionated stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) monotherapy for low to intermediate-risk prostate cancer.
21. International Society for Sexual Medicine. Prevalence and Predicting Factors for Commonly Neglected Sexual Side Effects to External-Beam Radiation Therapy for Prostate Cancer. A Frey
22. Murray KS and Thrasher JB. Have We Underestimated Erectile Dysfunction after Prostate Biopsy? AUANews. 2015; 20(12): 11.
23. BJUI. A prospective study of erectile function after transrectal ultrasonography-guided prostate biopsy. Katie S. Murray, Volume 116, Issue 2 August 2015 Pages 190–195.
24. How seniors can prevent the legal seizure of all their assets. Business Insider. Aine Cain10/9/2017
25. Epidemic of overtreatment of prostate cancer must stop By Otis Brawley, CNN Contributor. Fri July 18, 2014
26. Preventive Medicine Volume 84, March 2016, Pages 34-40 Masculinity in the doctor’s office: Masculinity, gendered doctor preference and doctor–patient communication. Mary S. Himmelstein.
27. Book-The Big Scare: The Business of Prostate Cancer. By Anthony Horan MD
28. Dr. Joseph Busch in Chattanooga
29. Treatment Regret and Quality of Life Following Radical Prostatectomy. 2013 December; 21(12): doi:10.1007/s00520-013-1906-4.

Investigate for yourself: Internet search: prostate cancer overtreatment or dangers or scam or hoax. Prostate biopsy sepsis or ED or dangers. Medical mistakes, etc, etc. The references are too massive and numerous to list them all in this document.

Posted: May 14, 2019

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