August 13, 2019
Except for the occasional bout of poison ivy, Kerry Moore never saw a reason to visit a doctor. His 50th birthday came and went without an annual checkup and the routine tests many men have at that age.
Today, as a prostate cancer survivor, the father of 2 adult children urges everyone to take the time for preventive care, particularly when they hit the half-century mark.
Shoulder pain from years of baseball led Kerry to his primary care doctor in his hometown of Lake Winnebago, Missouri, where he works as a credit manager for a manufacturing company. After examining Kerry’s arm, the physician ordered routine bloodwork, including a prostate-specific antigen test, that was overdue.
The test revealed an elevated PSA, presumably due to an infection. Kerry started taking antibiotics and eventually visited a urologist in Lee's Summit. While his PSA had dropped, the urologist decided to perform a biopsy. It came back positive for prostate cancer.
Nationally recognized cancer care
Kerry’s sister-in-law works in healthcare and suggested he see “the foremost authorities in prostate cancer” at The University of Kansas Cancer Center, 1 of 53 National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer centers nationwide. Specifically, the cancer center’s prostate cancer program is recognized by Urology Times as 1 of 13 Clinical Centers of Excellence in the nation. Additionally, U.S. News & World Report ranks The University of Kansas Hospital among the nation’s top in cancer care and urology.
At the cancer center, Kerry met with William Parker, MD, urologic surgical oncologist. The day after their appointment, Dr. Parker called Kerry with biopsy results and explained his recommended treatment plan, having already consulted with colleagues.
“I was impressed that he took the time to verify his thoughts about our course of treatment. I honestly don’t think you can get any better care than that,” says Kerry, who went home the day after surgery with a timeline of what to expect during recovery.
“Everything they told me has been spot-on,” he adds. Since his December 2017 surgery, Kerry has had 2 follow-up appointments and expects to begin radiation in June 2018. His prognosis is good.
Traveling for prostate cancer treatment
The drive to the cancer center from Lake Winnebago takes approximately 45 minutes, but Kerry says it’s worth it to get the best care. He also says there have been positive experiences from his unexpected diagnosis. He has become an advocate for preventive care, and people are taking his advice. His wife of 31 years had a colonoscopy that revealed a 22-millimeter precancerous polyp, which the doctor removed. His friends are paying closer attention to preventive care too.
“A buddy of mine called to ask how I was doing. He said, ‘I’m 52 and I haven’t been to see my doctor, but if this can happen to you, it can happen to me,'" Moore says. “That’s what I tell people now. Go in and get your PSA bloodwork done when you turn 50. My treatment and recovery would have been easier if we’d caught my cancer earlier.”