HDR Brachetherapy Complete!

On Tuesday I had half of my treatment done. It was HDR Brachetherapy. Google it for full details, but the gist of it is, they insert a number of catheters into the prostate through the gooch. In my case it was sixteen.

After they are in place they program a robot using AI, that inserts and removes a high dose radiation pellet into various parts of the prostate in order to radiate the tumor from the inside out. The radioactive pellet is only left in place for fractions of a second at a time.

This is NOT a picture of me.
Just a stock photo of HDR Brachetherapy.
But yeah… It’s like that.

The treatment only lasts about twenty minutes, but it happens after you have been previously anesthetized for the catheter placement, and you are sleepy. I desperately wanted to fall asleep, but the clangy, beepy machines monitoring my breathing kept throwing a fit whenever I’d drift off, and the techs would tell at me over the intercom to breathe deeper, so I had to stay awake and breathe deep the whole time.

It was all over before 2:00 pm and I got to go home; well, back to the camper, where I was finally able to sleep.

It’s been three days now and I’m mostly back to normal, though it feels like someone wearing a steel toe boot has kicked me in the gooch. If you’re familiar with horseback riding, I feel a bit saddle sore.

On Monday I go in for CT Simulation, which is where they put me in the CT machine and design my external beam radiation treatment. Dr. Mohammad says that I’ll need 22 treatments of external beam radiation (Update … 23). The doctor in Colorado wanted to do only external beam radiation, and do something like 45 treatments. I also don’t think that HDR Brachetherapy is available in Colorado. I asked about the “seed” radiation and the Colorado doctor said, “yeah… We don’t do that anymore”.

Overall, if you have cancer, you couldn’t be in any better hands than those of the doctors at MD Anderson in Houston, so though it’s been a drag living in a travel trailer, I’m glad I came here.

If you’re a man, get your PSA tested regularly. It’s cheap and could save your life!

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