Despite years of early screening in the United States, Murray Wadsworth’s prostate cancer was not detected until he was seen by a urologist in London, England, where he was living and working at the time. Soon after, he traveled home to Austin, Texas, to see his long-established urologist, but he said no to the recommendation for immediate surgery. Instead, he returned to London to investigate diagnostic and treatment methods not yet available in the U.S. While striving to understand why his diligent screening efforts failed, Murray was shocked by the considerable disparities between the U.S and international medical communities regarding diagnostic and treatment methods of prostate cancer. Suddenly, Murray was hurdled into becoming a patient-detective, patient-scientist, and strong self-advocate.
Following his first treatment in January 2016, Murray embarked on another new journey, to live his life to the fullest traveling in an RV while researching anticipated additional treatments. Then in 2019, he found a new life purpose: sharing his experiences in his book Prostate Cancer: Sheep or Wolf? Navigating Systemic Misinformation. From campfire talks to book signings – and an increasing number of prostate cancer support groups – Murray is helping men navigate this disease, sometimes one man at a time.
ABOUT THE BOOK
Prostate Cancer: Sheep or Wolf? reveals the systemic misinformation surrounding prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment in America through the shocking stories of Murray Wadsworth and five other men. In an easy to read style, Wadsworth shares his experiences with established diagnostic and treatment methods in the United States and innovations he benefited from in Europe, including medical consultations in England, advanced imaging in the Netherlands and salvage lymph node surgery in Belgium.
Medically reviewed and professionally edited, Wadsworth’s book reveals just how far behind prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment is in America. He also shares personal and family aspects of his journey, humor, and parallels to his RV experiences.
QUOTES FROM MURRAY
- “Men are unnecessarily afraid of screening, which is nothing more than a blood test, simple physical exam, and an MRI.”
- “Because of all the misinformation, men are often more afraid of treatment side-effects than the cancer itself.”
- “A multiparametric MRI or similar should be done before a biopsy, and the biopsy should be guided by imaging – not done blindly.”
- “Men should quell all fears and appreciate that prostate biopsies are a walk in the park compared to childbirth (or so they say).”
- “Countries such as England, Belgium, and the Netherlands have advanced prostate cancer diagnostic and treatment modalities. The healthcare business model needs to change in America.”
- Prostate cancer is not just an old man’s disease, and the lack of early screening is taking an avoidable and regrettable toll on men’s lives, including young men.
- Over 30,000 American men continue to die each year of this disease, and nearly a half million are on life-altering hormone-blocking drugs.
- There is no standard established prostate cancer screening program in the U.S. as there is for breast and colon cancer, despite the annual death rate being nearly equivalent to that of breast cancer and greater than that of colon cancer.
- The U.S. lags behind much of Europe in diagnostic practices. For example, imaging prior to biopsies and after a primary treatment failure is commonplace in much of Europe. In England, Wadsworth received independent biopsy pathology reviews, which must align with independent MRI findings.
- Socialized medicine institutions – supported by government salaries rather than motivated by individual practices’ monetary gain – are focused on diagnostics to save money. Catching diseases early is cheaper for both the hospital and the patient.
- September is National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month
- October is Health Literacy Month
- November is Men’s Health Awareness Month
“A fascinating journey through the complexities of US healthcare, insurance, and prostate cancer. Where screening is discouraged and treatment options all come with unacceptable side effects. Well researched, but easy to read. As a survivor and physician, I could appreciate both sides of Murray’s dilemma.” –James Thomson, M.D.
“The diagnosis of prostate cancer is a frightening one. Even as a health care provider, it is difficult to keep up with the ever-changing research and recommendations for diagnosis and management of this all too common disease. Prostate Cancer: Sheep or Wolf? does a fabulous job of discussing both the mainstream and the cutting-edge options, and will be immensely helpful to many men as they investigate the alternatives.” –Michael J. Hilts, M.D.
“This is not only a very informative book, but is also exceptionally easy to read – I completed it in one sitting. The author has illustrated the minefield that is the management of intermediate risk prostate cancer. This book is a must-read for those worried about their PSA result and for those who have recently been diagnosed with prostate cancer.” –Dr Eryl A Thomas, MRCP, FRCR Consultant radiologist (retired) James Paget University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, England
“Mr. Wadsworth has written a very personal account of his ongoing battle with Prostate cancer. Although not a treatise on treatment of Prostate cancer it does contain and demonstrate several actions that I, as a Physician treating various cancers, feel are important to all patients. All cancers and all cancer patients are unique but this book does provide examples of how to accept and deal with a cancer diagnosis sadly common to many men.” –Jack Walzel, M.D.