Rod Gilbert is a retired Canadian professional ice hockey forward who played for the New York Rangers in the National Hockey League.
Transcript of Rod Gilbert’s Prostate Cancer Story
This is Rod Gilbert, Hall of Famer, Hockey Player. A drastic event occurred when I was a little bit younger. That the news that my dad was admitted in the hospital, had prostate cancer. So, immediately I went to Montreal and visited him.
For the next two years, he was in hell. He was suffering. It was uncontrollable, not operable. So, for the following two years I frequently went to Montreal.
As he admitted, he had never had it checked or never had the good fortune to prevent it or do something about it. And now it had spread out of the capsule into his lymph nodes and his bones. And it was just a matter of time. So, with great disappointment, he passed. And I promised myself it would not happen to me.
When I did come back to New York, I would regularly get checked. A really good friend of mine, David Coke had made a contribution to Cornell Presbyterian. He has a department and had donated a hundred million dollars, and had named Dr Scardino as head for prostate cancer. So, I called his office. We were good friends for many years and I had gotten in to see Dr Scardino.
He said, “Well, what’s your Gleason Score, what is this, let me review your test…” I said, “Doc, you have to take it totally out.” He said, “Dr Zaleski here maybe could give you some radiation, and would you like to meet with him?” I said, “Absolutely. If it was your dad, Dr Scardino, he’s the chairman of prostate cancer research there, what would you do?” He said, “Well, let’s talk to Dr Zaleski.” Dr. Zaleski had taken care of Mayor Guiliani and had operated on him with a method of using some seeds to kill the cancer, injected 90 seeds. And then 28 radiation treatments after that. I agreed to do that. That pleased me a lot. And Dr Scardino guaranteed me that after that treatment, if by any chance the cancer came back, that we could remove the tumor, or the cancer, remove the prostate.
So, I went to get the operation of inserting the seeds and the radiation. And it’s been seven years that I’m cancer free with a PSA of 02.
So, my advice is to get checked early, and possibly get a second opinion because it’s quite frequent that people do have cancer in their prostate. It’s very slow growing, but at the same time if they require treatments, if they catch it early enough, which I’m trying to advise you, and promote the fact that if you detect it early, it’s curable at a very high rate, in the 90 percent rates.
So, please, I implore it upon you to get early checkups. Sometimes even if your PSA, which is only one method of possible detecting it, you ask your urologist what other sure, sure results that would tell you exactly what you have. So, I want you to take this advice and support a cure for prostate cancer and certainly early detection.