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If you've ever heard Bugs Bunny, "Ren and Stimpy", or "Futurama" on television then you know his voice; cartoon voice actor Billy West, "the man of 1000 voices" joins The Doctors to share his story about his battle with prostate cancer.
About 10 years ago Billy noticed a loss of energy and was having sexual problems. When he learned that his pituitary gland had stopped sending signals to his body to make testosterone he opted to receive testosterone injections. Billy’s doctor made it clear to him the risks of doing so, namely, an increased risk of prostate cancer.
Billy went forward with the injections and initially felt great. But half a year later, his doctor found cancer in his prostate. He scheduled his surgery and upon reading the contract which noted there was a chance of death, Billy felt like he was “hit over the head with a ton of bricks.” Billy left notes to his friends and family telling them he loved them all, in case anything happened during surgery.
Billy is now eight and a half years cancer free! The Doctors invite on urologist Dr. Joshua Gonzalez to discuss if there is a link between testosterone treatment and prostate cancer. Billy carries some blame due to his belief that his choice to get testosterone shots were what led to his prostate cancer. However, Dr. Gonzalez shares that the most recent data shows no link between testosterone treatment and an increased risk of developing prostate cancer.
Dr. Gonzalez notes that prostate cancer is treatable and curable and doctors are trying to move away from over-diagnosis and over-treating. Some men with prostate cancer are being observed now with no treatment and living long happy lives.
Dr. Gonzalez notes that these groups are at higher risk for prostate cancer and should get screened earlier and more often:
- Men with a family history
- Men over the age of 60
- African American men
- Obese men
- Men with a high-fatty diet
Billy urges people to be vigilant with their health, encouraging viewers that even if you feel foolish about a possible health issue or if something feels off, to see your doctor. ER physician Dr. Travis Stork agrees, “Don’t necessarily fear a cancer diagnosis, fear a delayed, late cancer diagnosis.”