Feb 3, 2020 Word for Word Media
John McPetrie shares his humorous views of the side effects of prostate cancer treatment. John (66) lives in Constantia, Cape Town, with his wife, Sue. They have two adult sons, having lost their eldest four years ago.  REGULAR PSA SCREENINGS  John was diagnosed with Stage 3b prostate cancer in late 2018 despite regular PSA testing for 22 years. “After many years of a relatively high PSA (it went up to almost 11), it began to drop; fairly unexpectedly and quite rapidly.  It fell to 4,02 in mid-2017. My then urologist thought that whatever had caused the high reading had disappeared. But evidently not,…

Feb 3, 2020 Word for Word Media

Prof James Ker expands on the risk of cardiovascular disease when treating prostate cancer. Global burden of cancer The Global Burden of Disease Cancer Collaboration described the cancer burden for 29 cancers in 195 countries1. In 2017, there were 24,5 million incident cancer cases worldwide of which prostate cancer (PC) contributed 1,3 million incident cases.  There has been improvement in cancer survival which has created a large and growing population of cancer survivors. About half of patients diagnosed with cancer will survive 10 years or longer2.  There are serious concerns that these cancer survivors could have increased medium-term to long-term risks for developing…

Nov 27, 2019 Word for Word Media
Dr Nirasha Chiranjan explains how prostate brachytherapy works. Prostate cancer Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men worldwide. Screening for prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels have led to prostate cancer being increasingly diagnosed.  Common symptoms of prostate cancer are difficulty urinating, reduced stream of urine, blood in the semen, erectile dysfunction and discomfort in the pelvic area. The initial treatment options for patients with non-metastatic prostate cancer consists of active surveillance, radical prostatectomy and radiotherapy.  The choice of treatment is determined by clinical stage, PSA level, Gleason score, patient preference, life expectancy, patient functional status and resource availability1-3. What…

Nov 27, 2019 Word for Word Media
Dr Sithembile Ngidi goes into detail about the three types of hormone therapy for prostate cancer and their side effects. Luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) agonists  Also called GnRH agonists, LHRH analogs, are injected as small implants under the skin. Depending on the drug used, they are given anywhere from once a month up to once a year e.g. leuprolide  and goserelin.  When LHRH agonists are first given, testosterone levels go up briefly before falling to very low levels. This effect is called testosterone flare and results from the complex way in which these drugs work.  Men who have urinary…

Nov 27, 2019 Word for Word Media
Chief Moabi tells us how he lives his life with prostate cancer, the side effects of hormone therapy, and how the Tsakane CanSurvive Support Group has helped him. Chief Moabi (67) lives in Tsakane, Gauteng with his wife, Nkele. They have one adult son (28) and two grandchildren. Four years ago, in 2015, Chief went to Tsakane Clinic for a check-up. He wasn’t in pain and was feeling fine. Though, every six months he would do a health check, checking for HIV, TB and the sorts. It was here where it was picked up that he may have prostate cancer. The…

Sep 30, 2019 Word for Word Media
Dr Sithembile Ngidi describes the different types of hormone therapy used to treat prostate cancer. To understand the who, what, where, why and how of hormone therapy, it’s important to start at the basics. That would be understanding the driving hormone behind prostate cancer and its treatment: testosterone.  Testosterone  This is the primary male hormone that’s key in the growth and function of sex organs, like the testes, prostate and other tissues.  Testosterone is an androgen (a natural steroid hormone) and promotes growth in tissues with androgen receptors. It exerts two types of effects on the body: Anabolic effects – growth of…

Sep 30, 2019 Word for Word Media
We hear how Pitso Majoro found out he had prostate cancer and how his wife, Marupine, dedicates her life to care for him. Pitso Majoro (81) lives in Soweto, Gauteng with his wife, Marupine. They have three adult children, two sons and a daughter, and one grandchild.  Diagnosed in 2016 In late December 2015, Pitso, then 77-years-old, complained about body pain, stiff muscles and insomnia. He also suffered urinary retention and constipation. Marupine rushed him to the emergency room. A urinary catheter was inserted and oral medication was prescribed. Five days later he was told to come in and get the catheter…

Jul 29, 2019 Word for Word Media
A surprisingly positive experience are not words that you would think would be associated with prostate cancer. Though, this is how Darren Robertson experienced his diagnosis. He tells us more. Darren Robertson (42) lives in Harfield Village, Cape Town with his wife, Loren and their daughter, Rebecca. Health check leads to diagnosis Darren never dreamt that he would be diagnosed with prostate cancer at the young age of 40, and never expected it to have been such a positive experience.  The financial planner decided to go for a full health check, in November 2018, because he was keen to boost his Discovery…

Jul 29, 2019 Word for Word Media
Dr Sithembile Ngidi educates us on the risk stratifying system of prostate cancer. Once a patient has been diagnosed and the tumour biological behaviour (personality) has been identified, treatment modalities are chosen, based on what risk profile the cancer falls into.  Parameters, such as prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level, Gleason score and T-staging, determine the risk profile. Other factors considered are patient choice, lifestyle, medical co-morbidities, risks and benefits, and life expectancy. I tell my patients to think of the risk profiles as dogs. Low-risk being your small friendly dogs, like a Chihuahua, which further divides into very low-risk and…