Back to Ben in Louisiana. As part of his attention to general health, he went to his primary doctor (not the urologist) for a routine check up at the end of April. Blood work was taken in advance to find that his PSA level had continued to elevate from 1.2 to 3.5 and now up to 5.4. While this is not unusual for BCG patients, the doctor was thorough and performed a routine and quite unpleasant procedure used for men called DRE . (As a side note, my PSA has remained low at 0.6 recently, and my DREs had all been negative except to note normal growth in the prostate.)
Unfortunately for Ben, and the doctor detected a "small lump" on the prostate. At this point the natural reaction is panic - there may be prostate cancer in addition to the bladder cancer. Both Ben and his wife were very concerned. In early May, Ben visited his urologist for a follow-up, and the second doctor confirmed the presence of the lump - estimated at 8mm in size (same as Sebastian's bladder polyp). The specialist felt that his preliminary opinion was a clogged duct, small cyst, or perhaps a granuloma (which is quite unusual and not as serious as it sounds).
The only way to be sure was to conduct a prostate biopsy , another quite unpleasant procedure - mostly due to the sounds one hears. Ben's took place in late May, using the common "rear entry" method. Here is how Ben described it in his own words:
Now for all those that have not had prostate biopsy, just let me say that is an eye opening and memorable experience. He punched 14 holes thru wall of colon and into prostate under local. Don’t let me exaggerate, really not much pain, but quite unnerving, the needle gun makes a loud click with ever shot.