Prostate Cancer Came A Knockin'
Prostate Cancer Came A Knockin’
A story of discovery, despair, determination, and divine intervention.
Why are many men over 45 hesitant about getting checked for prostate cancer? Do they feel a rectal exam diminishes their “manhood?” Or do they view the procedure as a “violation” or an unnatural act? Unfortunately, I was one of those men who fell in the latter two categories, and in "Prostate Cancer Came A Knockin’," I share how my reluctance to see a doctor for a rectal exam nearly cost me my life and still may.
Whatever men’s reasoning is regarding not getting checked for prostate cancer, the consequences could prove deadly. According to the World Cancer Research Fund, prostate cancer is the 2nd most common cancer in men worldwide. In addition, per the American Cancer Society, prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in American men; about 1 man in 8 will be diagnosed with it during his lifetime about 1 in 41 will die from the disease! And according to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Black men are twice as likely to die from the disease.
I’m convinced I wouldn’t be in my current situation had I known I could have taken a simple PSA (Prostate-Specific Antigen) blood test for early prostate cancer detection. Unfortunately, I’ve paid a severe price for avoiding annual checkups. Due to my medical negligence, I’ve incurred $255,363.96 (and counting) in medical bills, had sixty-eight (68) hospital and doctor’s office-related visits (and counting), 3 cystoscopies, and wore a catheter for six months. In addition, I’ve had a robotic prostatectomy and two nephrostomy tubes placed in me because my kidneys almost failed. All because of my misconceived notion about rectal exams. Hopefully, my missteps won’t be yours.
If you’re a man over 45 and haven’t been checked for prostate cancer, a treatable disease, and you end up dying because you neglected to see a doctor, what will the impact of your loss be on your loved ones? If that thought alone doesn’t make you want to go and see a doctor about your prostate, then nothing probably will.