Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Cancer, again

The idea that a positive frame of mind has any effect on the course of the disease is utter tripe. Both myself and Cancer Boy take a dim view of this, not only on grounds of evidence but on the basis that it essentially blames the dying for their fate.

Remember, we overwhelmingly tend to hear about the 'positive' people who have had cancer. Well, they survived it, they have a reason to be cheerful! The miserable sods who died are silent. An obvious point? Granted, but one not to be forgotten.

The course of my own little malignancy lies in the hands of Fate and medicine. Probably more the former than the latter. It's not going to try to kill me any time soon, and may never.

But a confounding factor is my age. Being 45 with prostate cancer screws up the treatment options and prognosis, I'm just too damn young! Radiotherapy is off the table, because of a concern that - in 25 years - that therapy itself may trigger another cancer. If I was 60, these things would be a lot more straightforward. Many men of that age die with prostate cancer and not because of it.

I'd love to know the stats for 45 years olds who get it. Anyone? As for surgery-.they could chop out the cancer in a flash, no problems. Well, to the extent that the cancer would be gone anyway. But surgery carries very high risks of causing permanent impotence and incontinence, and I'm damned if I'm leaving prison with a penis-pump and a nappy. And hence my recent jibe against the progress in cancer research.

So, I've decided adopt the stance of all sensible cowards. Do absolutely nothing, and hope for the best. Cancer Boy himself has lived several times longer than originally expected. Having being labeled as essentially intractable, he has found a surgeon who is at least willing to explore whether he can be usefully spliced-and-diced and given longer to live. Just don't tell him it's because he's ''positive''...


  1. You're quite right Ben, anything that perks up the patient must also perk up the cancer. Similarly with the advice of the 'eat healthily' brigade.

    Now let's be a little less positive and a bit more lateral. Consider the adage: If you don't use it, your lose it.

    So what we need to lose is the prostate's ability to recuperate from the 'dirty laundry' (a man has to do what a man has to do, etc.). Now we can't expect a sentient fellow to perform the necessary marathon duty for this sure fire therapy; so the NHS should supply a nurse or three to help with the physical exertions; after all, it's a matter of life, death, and Jacquie Smith quality porn. And as your eyesight fails, the nurses can take it in turn to read it to you.

    Then again, with your luck, two of the nurses would be male, and the third, the hospital arm-wrestling champion!

  2. Careful scientific studies have shown that people who just get on with their lives have a better average outcome than whose who sink into despair, and better than those with an angry "I'm gonna lick this ****ing cancer" attitude.
    Your immune system will attack the cancer if it gets a chance, so stop that silly smoking, look forward to your release and look after yourself.

  3. Sorry for change of topic, but there was an interesting news item this evening, with our friend Mr Spurr being interviewed:

  4. Ben's cancer is early stage and slow growing, there's a reason Drs recommend watching and waiting with this type of cancer and it's because the treatment can be worse than the cure.

    As for advice that Ben stops smoking, I'm fairly sure he knows that already...

    How about we don't try and give well meaning advice and instead accept that only people who have been in Ben's position can understand what he's going through and offer our best wishes and support as best we can instead?

  5. Obviously, I meant the cure can be worse than the disease in my comment above.

  6. My Grandpa has prostate cancer. For many years the "watch and wait" option was enough. He has had to have some treatment now, though neither radiotherapy or surgery, I think it's hormonal. As cancers go, it's one of the nicer ones!

    As a slightly tongue in cheek suggestion, have you thought about contacting Al-Megrahi's medical witness?! You may manage to get yourself released on compassionate grounds!

  7. I agree with Wigarse and send my best wishes and support for Ben.

    I also firmly believe that the sooner they fulfill their obligation to Ben by moving him to the better conditions of open prison will see him thrive.


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