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Col Johnson from Cairns tells his story

Col Johnson

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My name is Col Johnson and can thank a lady acquaintance for me still being alive today.

It was three weeks before my 50th birthday and Raquel (not her real name) suggested I make an appointment with the Dr. I scoffed and said there was nothing wrong with me I was in good health. "Look at it this way then" said Raquel "You are going in for a 50,000 Kms service."

On checking my blood I showed an elevated PSA level. The Dr. assured me that this was nothing to worry about but he would refer me to a specialist 'just in cas'.

After further tests the specialist hit me over the head with a lump of 4 X 2. I was stunned, then I realised there had been a mistake and it was not me who had the disease - it was some other poor coot.

Eventually it dawned on me that this was not the case and I was given 2 options. The knife or radiation and to return in a week with my decision. I didn't know enough but fortunately I had 2 sisters who were nurses. They didn't know enough either but they knew who to ask.

My initial decision was the knife but when one sister said if they spill even one tiny drop of blood the cancer would flare again so I changed my mind and had radiation. This necessitated going to Townsville 400 Kms away and as I was self employed a six weeks zero income period.

All went well until 2003 when the prostate enlarged and I had to have a TUR(P). I bled so much that year and went into hospital 4 times that the family thought I was going to fall out of the tree. I received invites to everywhere. The specialist told me to put my affairs in order and if I was going to do a World trip to do it now.

I finally got round to the trip in 2007 and have lived a fairly healthy life (except for the cardiac arrest at Christmas 2008) until now.

June 2012 saw an outbreak of secondarys in my spine which crippled me but further radiation has given me another lease on life and I now suffer only minor back pain.

I have been forced to give up work.

Month and year of diagnosis. Example: June 2009

September 1995

Age at diagnosis. Example 61 years


PSA at diagnosis. Example: 7.7


Biopsy details. Examples: Positive cores 7/12 (58%) OR (R: 4+5 75%, 4+5 75%, 4+5 95%, 4+3 20%, 3+4 15% L: -, -, -, -, -, 3+4 50%)

Positive of all three samples. I could not bear the pain of getting another three

Bone scan result at diagnosis. Examples: Clear OR Metastases in pelvis and lower spine

I now have mestastases in the lower spine

Lymph nodes at diagnosis. Examples: Clear OR CT scan shows 2 lymph nodes positive

Clear as far as I know

Highest PSA before treatment. Example: 10.4


Initial treatment - radiation. Examples: External beam OR brachytherapy OR HDR brachytherapy boost

External beam

Lowest PSA after initial treatment. Example: 0.2


Month and year of recurrence. Example: June 2012

June 2012

PSA at recurrence. Example: 2.7


Testosterone at recurrence. Example: 0.5 nmol/L

Not Known

Bone scan result at recurrence. Examples: Clear OR Metastases in pelvis and lower spine

see above

Other scan result at recurrence. Examples: CT scan clear OR Pelvic MRI with IV contrast shows recurrence in prostate bed

as above

Recurrence treatment - radiation. Example: External beam to prostate bed OR External beam to 2 bone metastases

external beam

Recurrence treatment - hormone therapy. Examples: Zoladex + Cosudex continuous OR Nilutamide

Zoladex Cosudex and Zameta

Current treatment status. Examples: Continuing ADT OR Monitoring PSA each 6 weeks

PSA monitoring every 12 weeks

Date updated. Example 23 September 2012

27 September 2012

Posted the simpler way at on our Write Your Own History page at http://www.jimjimjim...n-history.html.

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