Wednesday, November 06, 2013

THE PROSTATE AWARENESS BLUES

When I first started blogging back in the Stone Age (2004), I became blogging buddies with many people on MS Spaces.

[Side note]  I wish someone would coin a term for "blogging buddies".  How about calling them "bluddies"?

One bluddy who won my heart through his written words is jockfullonuts or Jnuts as I dubbed him as we discovered we were not only kindred spirits, but also Siamese twins separated at a very young age.  Although this is a repost, I find it just as appropriate for Prostate Cancer Awareness Month 2013 as it was when I first wrote it. 

Here is Jock's rant titled "Footloose and Diaper Free" :
So, it wasn't as bad as I anticipated. There was no rectal exam. This was merely a PSA blood test. If my bloodwork comes back elevated, I will worry about the old finger bang at that time. Which is fine, as my 'roids have been acting up lately and the only way someone is going to shove anything up my ass is after they give me a bottle of tequila and they are in possession of a jackhammer.

When asked if I wanted the rectal in addition to the PSA, I politely declined by saying, "only if you buy me dinner and call me daddy." My offer was refused. I DID get a Tootsie Pop and a blue ribbon enameled pin signifying "Prostate Awareness." I was already aware I had a prostate, but I took the pin anyway.



How could I leave that alone? I honestly tried, but the force was strong within him! I answered the call of the wild with my own little twist titled "A Visit To Dr. Pain's Office" but included his delightful and very insightful words on my blog as a lead in for what I wanted to say:
I'd like to take this opportunity and turn a simple medical diagnostic test into a Men Are From Mars and Women Are From Venus moment. I believe every man I've ever known who has had a prostate exam has described the doctor as having fingers the size of tree limbs and the personality of Marquis de Sade. It's not difficult to picture the doctor coming into the examining room, snapping those latex gloves and telling the patient that the procedure may be a little uncomfortable. Uncomfortable? How about humiliating? And the poor fool isn't even being offered dinner and a movie to go along with it!

I know medical staff do their best to preserve a person's dignity, but how dignifying can a prostate exam be if you're a male or a Pap smear and mammogram be if you're a female? The majority of people reserve access to the vajayjay, the twins and the Incredible Hulk exclusively for their significant other. Now, here we are with an almost total stranger and we're PAYING them to prod and poke us. Nope, we aren’t in some sleazy motel with a prostitute! We're in an examining room with our doctor!

From a woman's perspective, I'd have to say Pap smears and mammograms are most likely the equivalent to the prostate exam. Guys, you're lucky because prostate exams aren't routinely done until a man reaches middle age. Ladies have to endure the joy of Pap smears and pelvic exams annually from the time they first become sexually active. Mammograms aren't started until later, but are routinely done at an earlier age than when prostate exams are started.

For the men who have never had their significant other complain about the whole female going to the gynecologist ordeal, let me fill you in. We not only get the Pap smear and pelvic exam, but we get a rectal exam also. We also have a breast exam and then are sent to have a mammogram depending on what age we are. What can I really say about having a complete stranger stuff my breasts into a cold metal vice and flattening them to the width of a pancake except, "oh boy! Where can I get one of those gadgets to have at home?" (Okay ladies...are you laughing with me?)

I guess the most difficult part of the whole exam experience is the waiting for the results part. Yep! We feel great! We didn't notice any lumps or any other abnormalities, but you never know! You always hear horror stories about someone who feels great one minute and then finds out they have cancer the next. I'm not a fretter and can only imagine what the wait for test results must be like for someone who worries about every little thing in life. They must drive themselves and everyone around them crazy in that period of time. How does anyone reassure or console someone like that?  Crushed valium sprinkled over ice cream, perhaps?  Or a several shots of their favorite liquid poison?

I have a suggestion for both genders. Guys, do something special for your lady to let her know you're there with her in spirit during this process. It doesn't take much to let someone know you care about them. A nice dinner out? A romantic getaway for both of you? Ladies, the same goes for you. Our guys need support, too (remember they're whiners!). How about tickets to a ballgame, taking him to a movie he wants to see (and you pay for it or it doesn't count) or buying something slinky from Victoria's Secret to wear for him? Just remember it's the thought that counts and doing something small may mean the world to the person you love. Actions always speak louder than words and here's an excellent opportunity to say 'I love you" very loudly!


So there you have it except for the comment our beloved Jock left for me as a response to what I had written:
Leave it to you to take my insipid tale about Nurse Ratched and turn it into something extremely worthwhile. I loved it and agree, except for one thing. Men are whiners? Oh, you must die! I'd come over there and slap you, but my back is killing me because I had to do dishes today. Damn, the pain is so intense from standing there it feels like I'm getting ready to give birth! Oh, and my hands are now all pruny and I think I'm coming down with the flu, because I've been sneezing and have a headache. Although, the headache could be from standing over the sink while steam rising from the water made me dizzy and disoriented. Mommy! I need to take a nap.
 

6 comments:

  1. Ha! I'd say more but I'm cringing over my whole body remembering my last pelvic exam, mammogram, and oh don't forget the vaginal ultrasound I had to endure before my surgery a couple years ago. Ughhhhh.

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  2. Our doctor says she has the smallest fingers in town.

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    1. She should have business cards with that printed on them.

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  3. Perhaps it is because I am a doctor I find the vociferous laments of men about a rectal exam bewildering and tedious. So much for being 'tough'. Men are such babies when it comes to their health.

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