Welcome to our CaringBridge site. You may not be aware that Ed has been battling Prostate Cancer for 3 years. Rather than having good news of remission, cancer is brutal and just keeps fighting back. So, we've created this site to keep friends and family updated on Ed's journey and treatment. We appreciate your support, prayers and words of hope and encouragement during this time when it matters most.
Please click 'Read My Story' to read the background of his journey.
Ed was diagnosed with Prostate Cancer in 2009 after routine testing during a Selenium and Vitamin E Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial (SELECT) he had been a participant in for several years. The study was discontinued in 2008 after findings there was no reduction in risk of prostate cancer with either selenium or vitamin E supplements but a statistically nonsignificant increase in prostate cancer risk with vitamin E. Because of the questionable findings, participants required routine follow up to provide further insight into the relationship of vitamin E and prostate cancer.
Ed has several stents leading to his heart and has been on blood thinners for years to prevent blood clots. Because of this, it took nine months after diagnosis for his blood to coagulate enough for the doctor to feel confident in doing surgery. So, in June 2010, in an effort to alleviate the cancer completely, and be able to bounce back, Ed had a robotic radical prostectomy. By this time, the cancer had traveled to tissue outside the prostate so the surgery was more invasive than hoped for. However, the surgery seemed successful and the doctor was confident he was able to get all the cancer. Ed is strong and with God on our side, was confident in his ability to fight the cancer. He never complained, and there was never a moment when he was down about his situation.
One year after surgery, he had a episode which led to an emergency room visit and subsequently determined cancer had spread to his bladder and lymph nodes. So, next step was radiation, then Lupron. Both those treatments seemed to be working until late 2012 when his PSA began rising quickly and steadily.
He added Casodex to his cancer treatment in January 2013 which was very difficult on his body causing pain, weakness, lethargy and just that ole crappy feeling not to mention a quick loss of 35 pounds. In February, additional testing showed the Casodex was not at all effective so they moved him to a new cocktail of Zytiga with Predizone. This has just created a new round of pain with swelling of the joints and other maladies that are difficult on his body. It's been a long year and no treatment has been working. As of November 2013, Ed's body his weak but his spirit is willing. Please keep Ed in your prayers and provide him words of encouragement on this page.
Each Journal update tells a more complete version of each step in his 2013 journey. Please join us on Team "SupHerrmann".
Another week has passed us by that was fairly uneventlful healthwise but ended with a weekend of Ed feeling well, eating well and enjoying guests!! I hope we continue with the same in the coming weeks.
We had a bit of a blip in physical therapy. Since Ed has been home, he has had a visiting physical therapist 1 or 2 times a week. On her last visit, she decided to discontinue treatment because she has not seen enough progress in the last couple of weeks. ( hmmmmm.. So, I am working on getting his doctor to put in a new order for phsyical therapy for a new physical therapist so Ed can continue working on his 2013 goal which is.....
Ed would love to attend a Christmas Eve service. For the next couple of weeks, he will be striving to improve his mobility and strength that will allow him to get out of bed and sit in a wheelchair for a couple of hours. The physical transport is easy, but the hardest part is getting his body ready to sit for a couple of hours. He suffers extreme back pain when sitting.
To help him obtain his goal.... we are planning on moving out one of our sleep number beds and moving in a hospital bed that is closer to the floor. This will make it easier for Ed to sit while he has his meals, put his feet on the floor and transfer to a chair. Something the rest of us consider easy and routine, is a challenge for someone who is bedridden.
Today's picture is from a 1973 copy of Sports Ilustrated that featured knuckleballer Wilbur Wood. Ed is shown as his catcher. He was notable knuckleball catcher in the 70's catching Sox's Wilbur Wood, Hoyt Wilhelm, Eddie Fisher and Houstons knuckleballer Joe Niekro with those magic hands.
May the words I say, And the things I do Make my lifesong sing, Bring a smile to You Let my lifesong sing to You, Hallelujah Lifesong (Casting Crowns)