LETTER: Early intervention may have saved my life in prostate cancer scare

I AM writing to echo David McKinlay’s appreciation of the NHS and especially our local health centre’s preventative approach to medicine.

Each year, I have a routine blood test for cholesterol etc. In 2008, it was suggested to me, by the nurse, I could have my PSA measured from the same sample. I could think of no reason why not, so I agreed, and now, looking back, I am so grateful to that nurse.

When the results came back, it was suggested I see a urologist, and did so. He put me on what is called active surveillance, where my PSA is measured at three or four-month intervals. Gradually, my PSA level started to increase, to the point where my cancer has now become aggressive, and I am shortly to undergo a course of radiotherapy. My prognosis is good as it has been caught so early, as despite my cancer being aggressive, I have no symptoms, so would never have found out until it was very advanced and probably beyond treatment.

My wife and I attend a Prostate Cancer Support Group and have found, from other members, it is by no means uncommon for men to have prostate cancer without knowing. Therefore it is most important men take the initiative and ask their GP for a PSA test, or their wives to nudge them towards having one done.