8/27/13. As of today, I have 3 more x-ray treatments culminating in a dose of 63 Gray to the throat. The pain has required narcotics pretty much continuously and the attendant constipative delights that go with that. Pills are difficult to swallow and the gag reflex is heightened. The final chemo was yesterday so I am done eating platinum.
I began hormone ablation treatment for an aggressive form of prostate cancer two weeks ago. While the throat cancer is substantially beatable, the prostate is a different story. Here is the deal fellas. While you can gauge with PSA numbers, it is the Gleason grading system that tells the tale. And to get that you must do a biopsy. In order of increasing severity, the Gleason score goes from 2 to 10. I pulled a 9.
Hormone ablation is delicate way of saying chemical castration. The spread of prostate cancer can be controlled somewhat for up to 2 years by shutting down testosterone production. This they do by injecting a synthetic peptide, Degarelix, into belly fat to control the dosing to the pituitary gland. Had my first hot flash a week ago. It was a eunuch sensation.
Interesting anecdote. My medical oncologist described an MD patient who had been using sunscreen on the radiated area of his throat. He soon experienced an increase in surface burning of the throat on continued x-radiation. Turns out he was using a sunscreen that had titanium dioxide that was scattering/absorbing radiation on the affected surface. He stopped and the accelerated damage ceased.