Why We Ride

My name is Ben Burghout and I’m a Prostate Cancer Survivor.

The main reason I’m here today is because of the PSA Test.  Here’s my story.

My annual physical always consisted of a physical prostate exam.  Yes, the old rubber glove. No fun but necessary because of issues I was having.  The main problem was frequent urination, especially at night.  The physical exams always provided normal results.  I just turned 58 years old and it was about a week before my annual physical was scheduled.  I was up again and unable to go back to sleep. So, as my custom, I went downstairs and channel surfed on the TV. I was surfing along dazedly when I, and I don’t know why, stopped on some obscure channel I’d never watched before.  As I sat there, eyes half shut, I heard the word prostate!  That got my attention and I started watching.  They spoke of a blood test for prostate cancer and how all men aged 50 and older should get it.  I made a mental note and went back to bed not realizing that the commercial had just saved my life.

At my physical the following week and after getting an all clear on the physical prostate check, I asked my Doctor about this blood test for prostate cancer.  He said “Oh, the PSA Test!  It’s not always reliable but sure.”  It was a day or two after my PSA test that my Doctor himself called me, which he had never done before or has since.  He said he needed to see me right away.  No need for an appointment, just show up and I’d be shown right in.  Rather ominous I remember thinking.  I remember looking at his worried expression when He told me my PSA test came back very high and that he wanted to schedule another one.  He wouldn’t look me in the eye.  He knew He had dropped the ball.

The second PSA test confirmed there was a problem and I was sent to a Surgeon.  He ordered a prostate biopsy.  Ten out of twelve samples came back cancerous.  Because of my age, the Surgeon recommended a radical prostatectomy.  The rest is history.  I survived and continue to be cancer-free.

The money raised by Ride For Dad events goes to Research and Awareness.  Research is obviously important but my life was saved by that Awareness Informercial.

I sometimes wonder what guided me that night to go downstairs, turn on the TV, to surf and stop on that obscure channel at the precise time that prostate commercial was on.  Wasn’t my time?  Fate? Luck? Divine Intervention? Perhaps my late Mom was still looking after me.

I am 67 years old now and cancer-free.

If you are 40 years of age or older, get a PSA Test.  It just might save your life.  It saved mine.


Ben Burghout « I’m A Survivor! »

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