The Stevenage game is Men United to promote awareness of Prostate Cancer
Shrewsbury Town’s game at home to Stevenage this Saturday is the club’s designated game as part of the Football League and Prostate Cancer UK’s year long ‘Men United’ campaign.
The matchball will be carried out by Town and cancer survivor Andy Miller, here is his story.
Prostate Cancer my story
My name is Andy Miller I am 60 years old and been a Town fan since I was 14. I first watched Shrewsbury play the last 3 home games of the 1967/68 season and I have been hooked ever since.
I was diagnosed with Prostate cancer last year. So it’s a great opportunity to combine both my love for the club and raise awareness for the cancer.
I am a firefighter at RAF Shawbury and retiring at the end of April after 34 years service. I was in the fortunate position of having regular medicals. Not everyone is in that position. I expect most people won’t have one in their entire working life. But the one I had last year probably saved my life.
It is 12 months ago this month I found out I had Prostate Cancer.
And now a year later I am free of cancer. I am not out of the woods as it could come back. I have to have blood tests every 3 months at present but the signs are very encouraging.
Last February I failed my medical with hypertension (high blood pressure) I was told to go and see my GP for tests.
My GP said that they would do lots of blood tests to find out the cause of my high blood pressure, so they checked my liver, kidney function and cholesterol.
I asked my doctor if they could check my PSA levels (Prostate- Specific Antigen), this is the blood test they carry out to check for signs of Prostate Cancer and I had not had it checked for a number of years. I had a Prostate Cancer scare in 2009.
In 2009 I found I was needing to pee two, three even four times a night. This had been going on for weeks so I went to my Doctors. The Doctor examined me and arranged for a PSA blood test the result came back saying it was slightly high so I was sent to the RSH for tests and a biopsy. Happily the outcome was that I was ok.
So moving on to February last year I had this in the back of my mind so asked for the test, this came back with high levels of PSA. I was sent for another biopsy and was told on 23 April I had cancer. Which as you can imagine came as a big shock.
I decided not to keep it a secret but to tell everyone which was an enormous release and has been great therapy. Talking really does help.
After having an MRI scan and full body bone scan they found that the cancer was confined to the Prostate but was starting to bulge out. I was given 2 options.
One RT (Radiotherapy) the other Radical Prostatectomy to have my prostate removed. I chose to have it removed and on 7th July I had the operation.
I was in hospital 3 days and off work for 3 months. I must be honest it is not pleasant and life after Prostate Cancer has its issues and effects people in different ways. But if you have a positive frame of mind you can overcome any problems.
I went back to see my consultant in September and he gave me the all clear he said they could find no trace of the cancer. What a relief that was.
So in 12 months I have been through every emotion and it’s looking good for the future.
I would encourage everyone in their 50s if they have any symptoms to see their doctor as soon as possible the earlier it’s found the better the outcome and my story is witness to that.
I would like to thank everyone who had anything to do with my treatment. The NHS gets a lot of bad press but in my case I cannot fault them. From the tests I had to the operation and the aftercare everyone was brilliant.
If you have any concerns check out Prostate Cancer UK it’s a great website to find out any details of signs and symptoms and there is a great online community where you can ask questions. It’s well worth a visit.
Google Men United v Prostate Cancer and take the test it costs nothing and raises much needed funds for research.
Thanks for reading my story I hope I may have helped someone.
If you have concerns about prostate cancer please call Prostate Cancer UK's confidential Helpline on 0800 074 8383 or visit www.prostatecanceruk.org. The helpline is free to landlines, staffed by specialist nurses, and open from 9am to 6pm Monday to Friday with late opening until 8pm on Wednesdays.