The Indignities of Age.
Yesterday a fifty-five-ish year old man stuck his finger up my butt, and I paid him to do it. Well, my insurance company did, anyway. It was a deeply unpleasant experience, but there’s no reason to believe that there’s anything wrong with my prostate. Which is good. Because I have warning signs.
Now, I’m not in any high risk group, from an ethnic or familial perspective. Or age. For the most part, men in my situation are not expected to start getting regular exams until they are 50 or so. I should have had a decade left. But I have warning signs.
I pee frequently. Now, that’s most likely due to my insulin resistance. Despite the fact that I take good care of myself these days, and only eat three cupcakes at a time once in a great while, and usually after a long run when I do, I am still insulin resistant. My morning blood glucose is too high (usually in the 103-111 range). My long-term blood glucose measure (A1c) is ok, at 5.5. But even that is toward the top of the normal range.
One way our bodies deal with elevated sugar is to pee it out a lot. So I do. And while my blood sugar is not alarmingly high – i.e., I don’t expect to suffer any complications at these levels – my body is responding by doing what it can to lower it. I need to eat less sugar, and I need to lose some body fat.
But insulin resistance is not the only reason that men pee a lot. Another reason is an enlarged prostate, which can be cancer. While I don’t have the familial indicators for that, having symptoms is more important than having family history. So I went to the doc and asked what to do, and he said that a prostate check was indicated.
So I had one. It was no fun, but it could have been worse. And now I know that I don’t have an enlarged prostate. So I don’t have to pursue a bunch of other, frightening medical remedies.
The doc agreed that my exercise and diet were doing alright by my blood sugar and said if I wanted to control my frequent urination I could take Flomax. I declined. I don’t need to start down the inevitable road of polypharmacy just to pee a little less frequently. I’m surviving now. It’s not a real problem. I just wanted to rule out more serious things. We did a urinalysis as well, and I’ll get those results tomorrow or the next day I think.
In the meantime, I need to try to eat less, or smarter. I can’t really exercise more. I’m doing a lot. But hopefully I’ll be able to drop down a few pounds one of these days and maybe that’ll have an effect. Maybe it won’t.
But it’s not worth worrying about something when there’s an easy check. So men, if you are in the groups, or of the age, or have some symptoms, go get your prostate checked. It’s no fun, but the knowledge is worth it.