Prostate cancer: Dr Hilary outlines signs and symptoms
A “very close” family was devastated when beloved grandfather Hezzy Shashua was diagnosed with prostate cancer last year.
Popular Hezzy, from Stockport in Greater Manchester, had experienced symptoms for a “few years”, prompting the check up that revealed the disease.
Speaking to Express.co.uk his son Scott shared his story in the hopes of alerting others to the warning signs.
Scott, 35, explained: “There was no family history of the disease, but he was suffering from an enlarged prostate for a good few years, going to the toilet multiple times per day, and through the night.
“That’s what forced the check-up.”
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Deli owner Hezzy was diagnosed with stage one prostate cancer – meaning the cancer was small and hadn’t spread yet – in September 2022.
“It was very tough,” Dad-of-three Scott recalled. “The three weeks waiting for the results were horrendous.
“I had conversations with my dad I didn’t imagine or want to have for at least another 20 years.
“We are one of the closest families you can imagine, Mum, Dad, my older sister Hayley and me.
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“When we found out the results as a family it wasn’t great, although when it was confirmed as cancer, we knew what we were dealing with and that we would be strong enough as a family to get through it.”
Hezzy, now 69, added: “I was a bit shocked. I had just lost my mum and sister to cancer. I wasn’t worried about me.
“My first thought was, ‘How do I tell my family and kid?’.”
The following month Hezzy underwent surgery to remove the prostate and was luckily given the all-clear from cancer.
However, he has suffered severe side effects of treatment ever since.
Managing director Scott said: “Although Dad is now cancer free, it’s been a tough and slow recovery process.
“He is learning how to go to the toilet by himself again and is tired all the time.
“As a relatively young and fit man, dad was optimistic when the doctors said he would be able to control his bladder again in six to 12 months and I think he believed he could achieve this in less time. We’re now nearly a year down the line and it’s not really getting any better.”
Scott, whose father-in-law died of cancer 15 years ago, admitted the news completely changed his philosophy.
He added: “We are so grateful for the life we have. We are very, very close.
“Losing a parent is selfishly going to be the hardest thing I will ever have to do, and I do worry constantly about what will happen to me when that day does come; I think about it a lot.”
In honour of his dad Scott is a proud supporter of Prostate Cancer UK and has raised more than £12,000 for the charity by completing eight marathons in eight days this year.
Prostate cancer does not always present with symptoms in the early stages.
Symptoms do not usually appear until the prostate is enlarged enough to affect the urethra, causing:
- Needing to urinate more frequently, often during the night
- Needing to rush to the toilet
- Difficulty in starting to urinate (hesitancy)
- Straining or taking a long time while urinating
- Weak flow
- Feeling that your bladder has not emptied fully
- Blood in urine or blood in semen.
If you experience symptoms of prostate cancer you should speak to your GP.
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