Heart-y Thankfulness

Just a quick update as we head deeper into the holiday season.

Along with the good news from last month’s scan, my PSA (the prostate-cancer blood marker that is the first-line monitoring agent) is now undetectable. Again, to be completely transparent, those results are not going to last forever, but we surely are thankful for them now.

Today’s visit to the cardiologist suggests that all is good in that department. Prostate-cancer patients under treatment need to keep an eye on this. Hormone-deprivation therapies can cause muscles to wither (and many of mine are withering.) The heart is a muscle. Hence…if you have prostate cancer or know someone who does, make sure that the cardiac situation is monitored on a regular basis. Today’s EKG showed no problem and essentially no change from previous EKGs. The cardiologist is pleased, though he scheduled a “strain electrocardiogram” for next month, just to be sure.

The last few suctions of blood work show that I have anemia that is worsening fractionally every month or so, another gift from the therapies. That could partially explain the increasing fatigue and occasional and minor shortness of breath, according to the docs. Now, I’ll be downing iron supplements along with all the other stuff.

And that’s it.

We’re thankful this holiday season to be where we are on this and where we are in life in general and for all of our relatives and friends.

I am particularly thankful for my wife, Marion, who makes sure that the weight and muscle losses and other side effects remain under control and who monitors the prostate-cancer message boards on a regular basis and who keeps us ever grounded and moving onward.

The objective: We have four grandchildren and grandchildren-ish kids in our orbit. All are sketching wondrous life stories. I want and need and plan to see how it all turns out.

P.S. If you are man, get your PSA checked at least once a year, more often if possible. If you are a woman, make sure the men in your life do this.

15 thoughts on “Heart-y Thankfulness

  1. A wonderful message from the bestest of pals. Your news is worthy of a thumbs up. Thinking of all of you during this holiday season and wishing you and yours health and happiness.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Such good news Marty and I know you will be around to see how the stories of your beloveds turn out. Wanting that for my children and grands is a huge part of what gets me off the couch every day. Keep on keeping on my friend!!

    Sent from my iPad


    Liked by 1 person

  3. So happy with your news, Marty. There’s a whole diaspora of “extended family” out here pulling for you, and holding you and your family (and “family-ish” 🥰) loved ones in our hearts.
    Lee Ann

    Liked by 1 person

  4. So very happy for you. Need to celebrate the wins and live in the moment. I am currently navigating the process with my dad. Zytiga is failing and after the holidays the doc will talk chemo. You state psa is undetectable, is that due to chemo therapy? Can you share what your chemo protocol was. Completely understand if too personal for open forum such as this. Thank you for sharing your journey though. As a caretaker it has been helpful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, Anna. Very sorry to hear about your Dad. My protocols have been detailed in previous posts, but here’s a summary: Eligard and radiation in 2018. PSA went undetectable. All treatment other than PSA tests eventually ended. In April 2021, PSA exploded almost overnight. Axumin scan showed spread through nearly all of my lymphatic system. Monthly Firmagon shots for three months (those were just awful), followed by four-month Eligard shots. Also four nightly Erleada pills. (Erleada is similar to Zytiga.) And six-month Prolia shots. For now, all of that has put the cancer on a leash. (I am aware that, technically speaking, Eligard, Firmagon, Erleada and Prolia aren’t considered chemotherapy, but they are chemicals that are injected or ingested into my body, and that’s close enough for me.) One day in the not-too-distant future, all of that will fail and I’ll be looking at “real” chemo, just as your Dad is. Please stay in touch and feel free to ask me any other questions. Thinking positive thoughts for your Dad – and for you.


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