Well, in truth I wont know the answer to that question until I die of natural causes that are not cancer.
But it is actually a complex question. I find most people opt for the question “did they get it all?”. So let’s start there. To recap, the “all” people would be referring to is all the cancer. So the answer is no because there were two. One, a sneaky little low grade slow growth prostate cancer. The other, a highly agressive, too rare to be considered, primary squamous cell carcinoma (scc to its mates) in my urethra, about half way along the shaft of my penis. At the time of biopsy, six weeks prior to surgery, this scc had developed into quite a little family as the daddy had matastisised at least eight secondries which were still living close to home. If not rounded up, it is these secondaries that would charge off and find somewhere to kill me.
The good news is that the surgical team and the pathologists are as sure as they can be that this family is all now in a specimen jar in a path lab somewhere. But just in case some secondary scc’s did escape, I will forever more have regular pathological screening, keeping an eye out for malignant cells from another unknown source. The first of these is in early May.
In the same screening round, they will check my PSA levels (prostate specific antigen) to see how Mr Sneaky is getting on. Remember he is still there at this stage because he might never be removed and for now at least, not poking tjis dragon means maintenance of urinary continance and some wierd sexual function. I might write more about PSA tests at some point. But Suffice it to say, because of these tests it seems now clear that way more men die WITH prostate cancer than FROM prostate cancer. For me, we have quite a lot of baseline data against which to compare future results so for now, I am just going to surf the wave I’m on. Truss biopsies aren’t fun but I guess we might go there again one day. Then I will explain in more detail how they collect samples by sticking a sort of dildo with teeth up your bum and pull the trigger for it to nip bits off.