Service manager and continence advisor for the Wide Bay Continence Advisory Service Ros Male with members of the Hervey Bay Prostate Cancer Support Group at their meeting at the RSL.
Service manager and continence advisor for the Wide Bay Continence Advisory Service Ros Male with members of the Hervey Bay Prostate Cancer Support Group at their meeting at the RSL. Alistair Brightman

Staying positive can help ease prostate problems

WHEN 74-year-old John found out two years ago he had prostate cancer, he said his doctor had a grin on his face.

"I asked him why and he said he thought it might lighten the burden," John said.

The news was hard to accept especially when surgeons said they could not operate.

"They didn't give me a reason so I just grin and bear it and keep going."

Wide Bay Continence Advisory Service service manager and continence adviser Ros Male said there might be other contributing factors when a doctor will not operate.

"It could be that someone has a bad heart or lung condition," she said.

"Generally if you are in good health they usually operate but if there are other things they won't do it.

"They'll also take into consideration what the results of all your tests were and whether it is a slow growing or aggressive cancer."

Diagnosed in 2010, Keith Hefner had his surgery in 2011 and said he is now cancer free.

His surgeon gave him some positive tips to give himself a better outcome after his surgery.

"He suggested that I do Pilates and pelvic floor exercises before I had the surgery," Keith said.

"I did it religiously for five months and it made all the difference.

"Prostate cancer affects you psychologically as well as physically.

"I chose to have the operation but in my case, I had an enlarged prostate, which caused trouble.

"The cancer was still contained within the prostate gland so I am lucky and since the surgery the relief has been fantastic.

"The specialist said I may die with it but not of it and recommended the operation.

"I don't regret it for one minute because I had a very good outcome."

Hervey Bay Prostate Cancer Support Group started in 1996 when Ros Male saw a need for something for the men in her community.

The group meets once a month at the Hervey Bay RSL and each month they have a guest speaker on various topics.

Earlier this year Ros applied to the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia (PCFA) for a Nursing Internship Award.

This award is called the Barry Collins award and was available to travel anywhere in the world and Ros said she did some research to find a centre to attend.

"I found the Sidney Kimmel Centre attached to the Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital in New York," Ros said.

"They have a Prostate Support Group that meets monthly at the Resources for Life after Cancer section.

"The submission was successful and the PCFA will fund my trip. I had to identify three expected learning outcomes and have to submit a written report following the trip."

Ros is looking forward to her venture to New York next month.



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