Well day 8 came and catheter removed (a Blessing), but we were not prepared for the bad pathology report. We were devastated :
"Margin-focally involved left anteroapical by adenocarinoma, specifically section F (Gleason 3+3+6) focally contacts the orange inked anterior left apical margin of resection . Extraprosatic Extension - Focally Identified . Seminal Vesicle - Not Identified ".
No Lymph nodes were taken to be evaluated.
The biopsy showed a higher 3=4=7 Gleason on the rt side but was all within the margin. (I couldn't help but notice that the left section of prostate taken was smaller than the rt side -don't know if this indicates a bigger area should have been removed during surgery? Oh well can't change that now.)
I guess we were swayed by all the diff. Dr.s assurances that my biopsy results (3 of 12 samples,3+3=6 gleason and PSA of 3.9 were early stage and high chance of organ containment. It definely took the wind out of our sails!
The surgeon said that only about 20% of patients will have a recurrence. I have learned to hate statictical evidence, since I always seem to fall in the small group! (It's like watching a close football game and hearing the announcer say that the other team's kicker has never made a 53 yd. field goal in his career - of course it insures he makes it to win the game.) The doc said there was nothing to do but wait for the 8 wk PSA test. If it is not 0 he would re-do to confirm and then recommend me to a radiologist.
Physically I seem to have recovered fairly well although I am going through quite a few pads rt now. I got a whoopee cushion for long ride home cause I am still a little tender.
I feel pretty lost as we pack up to return home - (about a 5 hr drive). I just hope surgery still served some purpose even though cancer is still there.
So the journey takes yet another unexpected turn. I'm sure I will be more positive once I've had time to digest it all.
Please share any knowledge, experiences w/ bad margins, and of course any advice, comments in general. Thanks.
I won't be able to reply until we arrive back home this evening.
Hope things work out without your having to take further steps, but if you do need to consider radiation, don't leave proton treatments off your list when checking things out. More info is in my post yesterday in response to "post op".
Really sorry about the less than sterling path report. Have you asked whether there's any way of learning lymph node status having failed to remove any for study? Absent that, I wouldn't jump to any conclusions about next steps until after one or two post-op PSA's and enough healing for the surgeon to do a DRE on the prostate bed.
The good news is that after surgery you do have the back-up option of radiation of the affected areas which isn't possible if you went the other way.
sorry to hear your less than ideal pathology report. the only thing i know about this is a guy at the office had a similar thing -- his PSA value didn't go quite to zero following recovery from surgery. He had a brief course of external beam radiation about 9 months after surgery. his PSA scores have been zero ever since. he consideres himself over it.
of course, my remarks are premature; your PSA may well be zero already.
and i know what you mean about always being in the smaller group. i guess that's how we all got here. :-)
good luck and keep posting. hope your recovery from surgery really takes off now.
Hope your ride home was comfortable. Sorry to hear you got a "bad path report"...
Time has a way of helping you focus and regain the energy and resolve to push on. For now, take a breath, relax and heal from your surgery, gather your loved ones together and take some time off for recreation. Then, as we all must do, move on and beat this thing!