Friday, March 02, 2007

Post-Op Prickles

For those of you who have followed my post-cancer progress, I am delighted to share that I remain cancer-free, based on the last check up I had. One of my doctors correctly observed that the next step would be to “cure me of my cure,” which was a radical prostatectomy.

The recovery has been astounding in some regards, and frustrating in others. But as a friend recently reminded me, what I am now enduring certainly beats the alternative.

Doctors tell me people heal from surgeries in different ways. Some heal well and quickly, others generate excess scar tissue as the incision and surrounding flesh recover from the invasion. I fell into the second group, and eventually required three additional surgeries to “clear the plumbing” of scar tissue.

Another unique side effect some post-op patients experience is the body’s production of collagen plaque and calcium deposits, which create a whole other unique set of challenges. I am now being treated for that with a series of (careful) injections of Tamoxin to encourage my body to breakdown the plaque and restore its natural elasticity.
Funny, some women pay big bucks to have extra collagen injected into strategic areas of their bodies.

Let’s just say I feel today like I humped a porcupine.
Counting the anesthesia, there are 33 new perforations in an area that is abundant with nerve endings. Championship bull riders and horse whisperers have no fear of competition from me. This morning you couldn’t pay me enough to climb onto a coin-operated horse at Wal-Mart.

Fellahs, don’t get too squeamish when it comes to discussing your health in the nether regions of your body. If the ladies can climb into a pair of stirrups once a year for their gynecological exploration, you can at least endure a simple blood test to check your PSA level. As for me, at least two more rounds of prickly therapy will be needed, they tell me.
Please don’t needle me about my progress.

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