Day 1 - In hospital
So lots to tell but let's start with how I ended up in hospital.
There has always been a bit of cancer throughout the family medical history so when I hit 50 years old I thought a wellman test may be a good idea - I went for one that focused on my overall wellbeing rather than fitness but ensured there was a PSA test.
A month or so later the comprehensive report was posted to me - it was mostly based on a traffic light system and I was pleased that the majority of the tests came out green. It also listed my fitness in the top 5% of my age group. The only 'amber' signal of significance was that my PSA level was 3.8 - not a terribly high number. If I was 40 that is even in the comfort zone but I was told that below 3 would be preferable.
So given the family history I decided to go to the GP for a repeat PSA test - this one coming in at 3.2 (getting better). The Doctor was a runner and thought my slightly raised PSA level could due to my cycling but to be totally sure put my name down for a MRI.
The MRI unfortunately showed up some area of concern, however only in my prostate area, which was a minor positive. From the MRI I went onto having a biopsy, which is certainly not the best experience - in fact it was pretty awful and I ended up getting a serious infection that eventually put me in hospital for a week.
Anyway, infection aside, the Doctors found a little more cancer than they originally thought and recommended surgery over active surveillance.
So a few months later - here I am - day 1 of my recovery with prostate now removed.
I didn't have the best of sleep - the ward is full of older guys that are struggling a lot more than I, which does make me think it is better for me to do this now, while I am relatively young and fit.
So what is the plan over the next 4-6 weeks - well I am handling it like any big sporting endurance event. Week 1 and I am not going to be good for much - I have a catheter in place, which will limit my movement. However the plan is to get out of bed on every opportunity, although rest is the priority.
Week 2-3 when the catheter is removed will allow me to increase my mobility and fitness. I hope the plan will be to schedule a number of walks around the lovely village I Iive in, increasing the distance as my fitness improves.
Beyond that my attention will turn to getting back to work and swimming, cycling and running - baby steps.
I also need to get over a couple of nasty side-effects of the operation, which will impact the quality of my life but hopefully not for too long.
There is also the repeat PSA test down the line, hopefully with a reading of zero. I will keep you informed.