Armando Santiago

Prostate Cancer
Treated by Andrew Chang, MD

At 70 years old, while receiving normal general physical exams at Travis Air Force Base it was noticed that my PSA levels had been rising to 7.8, so at that time after 2 rounds of biopsy, bloodwork and a MRI it was determined that I tested positive for prostate cancer, the very last thing anyone wants to hear. My Urologist at Travis AFB was quick to recommend removal of the prostate; however the possible side effects did not seem like something I wanted to deal with so the next recommendation was 40 days of standard radiation therapy that was offered at David Grant Hospital, Travis AFB.

After looking into what radiation therapy was all about and its side effects I wanted to look into other therapy that might be available to me. This is when my sister who lives in Vista CA told me about the California Protons Cancer Therapy Center in San Diego. It did not take long once I started to look into California Protons to know this was the place I wanted to go to for my therapy. I made the calls and provided the paperwork, lab work, CDs of my MRI etc. and in short time my wife and I were meeting with Dr. Rossi at California Protons on day one of our 2 day pre-therapy visit. At this time I was accepted into their program and Dr. Rossi provided answers to all our questions and gave us a great overview of the technology utilized in Proton therapy, as well as every step that would follow and the side effects throughout and following my treatments.

On day two I did the pre-treatment prep work which is about a two part MRI and computer plotting the location of the area to receive the therapy. The staff was really great, professional and courteous. Two weeks later I returned to California Protons to begin my 26 days of therapy. I must say that on day one I was a bit on edge, however the staff once again just made it go so smooth that you just fall into the routine of the therapy and the days just tick away. As for the treatments themselves I had no pain at all however a little discomfort which passes quickly. I did experience some pain and difficulty with urination later each day, with some days being better that others.

Having the weekends free of the treatments did help and once all the treatments were finished all things returned to normal within just a few weeks, just like Dr. Rossi told me they would. At the 3 month mark following my treatments I had my first PSA follow up blood work and my PSA dropped from 7.8 to 3.4, again just like Dr. Rossi predicted. I am now returning for my 6 month PSA test and I am sure it will again be a good one. California Protons Cancer Therapy Center, Dr. Rossi and his staff were exceptional, as is the facility itself. You could not find a better place to deal with a cancer. I highly recommend that you be proactive and check out the great work being done here.


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