The Jackson Herald
March 28, 2001
Just trying to
save a life
There are two kinds of men in the world:
those who have prostate problems and those who are going to have
them. Just stick around, young fellow. You'll see.
Be forewarned, ladies and gentlemen. This medical column is somewhat
like an X-rated movie. Well, R-rated anyway. It may be offensive
to a few prudes out there who are priggishly attentive to propriety.
The weak of heart and squeamish of stomach may also want to move
on to sports. This is very serious business.
Look, all we are trying to do here is save a man's life. If what
follows disgusts you, I'm sorry. Sort of, anyway.
Marvin Poe told me one time that for every deer you see by the
side of the road, there are 10 back in the woods that you don't
My doctor told me one time that for every man who talks to him
about his prostate troubles, there are 10 (back in the woods?)
who can't, don't and won't.
Why is that?
I don't know this for a fact, but I've been told that a woman
runs to her gynecologist if she even suspects she has a problem
peculiar to her sex.
But the typical man? Never. No, not to his gynecologist. His
urologist. Shoot, he doesn't even know how to spell urologist.
He'll talk to anybody (except a doctor) about anything (except
He gets up umpteen times a night to urinate. He spends more time
in the bathroom than he does in bed. That's why his bed is in
the other room. I mean, somebody's got to get some sleep.
On his way to work he slams on his brakes, pulls off the road
and hits the woods. He has to be careful he doesn't do it in
his shoes. And he nearly always leaves more in than he lets out.
That is why, when he arrives at the office, he has to make a
side trip before he arrives at his cubicle.
When he arrives in unfamiliar territory - the ballpark, church,
movie, restaurant, new neighbor's house - his first question
is, "Where is the bathroom?"
He hasn't had a decent cup of coffee in years - just that awful
decaffeinated stuff. Don't offer him a soft drink unless it's
caffeine free. He used to like beer, but the last one he had
tripled its volume and he camped out in the bathroom all night.
He wakes up in the morning with lower back pain, which he attributes
to sleeping crooked last night or that awkward golf shot Saturday.
Now, when he goes to the john to relieve himself, there's little
relief and lots of misery.
Then come the chills, fever and shaking of a full-blown urinary
tract infection. The symptoms may be forerunners of kidney stones,
kidney failure or - perish the thought - the C word.
Now he's forced to go to the doctor and talk about his problems.
Oh, if he'd just gone when he first started spending too much
time in the bathroom. Chances are an enlarged prostate gland
was his only trouble - back then.
But today, following surgery and facing radiation, he is looking
for a support group.a
I heartily recommend the one that meets every morning for coffee
and fellowship at Bruce's Fine Foods. Half of the 20 or so men
who gather around that oblong table have been there and done
that, and are alive and well and willing to share their experiences.
In fact, they enjoy it. No longer are they shy and bashful. Nothing
embarrasses them anymore. They'll tell you everything you've
ever wanted to know about the male genital system.
Furthermore, they will allay your fears and entertain you with
their stories. Just keep in mind that some of them are fishermen.
All of them have had run-ins with the catheter. This is a hollow
cylinder designed to be passed through the urethra into the bladder
to drain residual urine after you have drained all you could
on your own.
It is not true that the catheter is the size of a garden hose.
That is a fish story.
And when the doctor digitally examines your prostate, he does
it with the middle finger on his right hand (if he is right-handed)
- not with a policeman's nightstick, as one survivor swears.
The passage of the catheter is known as catheterization. Today
(What has this world come to?), the procedure is usually administered
by a girl, female, lady, woman nurse.
One veteran of the prostate wars went through this ordeal every
four months for several years. Waiting on the examining table,
he prayed that he would get the pretty, sweet, gentle one. His
prayers were seldom answered. More often than not, he got the
ugly old battleaxe (macho if she had been the opposite sex) who
hated all men. In fact, she hated men so much that she never
bothered to lubricate the catheter.
Another told about his prostate surgery. The doctor said someone
would come in and prep (shave) him before the operation. Someone
was a beautiful little blonde female in her early 20s. If that
were not embarrassing enough, another little blonde female in
her early 20s came in to watch.
Young men, of course, will not find this unusual or unpleasant.
I'm just trying to prepare the older generation for what awaits
them at the urology clinic or hospital - those who didn't see
about their problems when they first showed up.
And I do hope that this informative essay and accompanying testimonials
will motivate all men to check with their doctor on a regular
basis - whether they need to or not. (They really need to.)
Prevention is the best cure. Early detection is second best.
It could keep you healthy for many years to come. Or would you
rather be a member in good standing of the support group that
meets every morning at Byrd's?
Just trying to save your life.
Virgil Adams is a former owner and editor of The Jackson Herald.
The Jackson Herald
March 28, 2001
Recent study: Some
foods will kill you
I will, from time to time, browse through
the many medical journals on the market today.
A recent study I came across included a list of several common
foods that researchers have found to cause problems among test
subjects. I spent several hours reading through the study, and
I wish to give you a synopsis of the main points.
Here, I have compiled a short list of the foods and the probable
side effects of eating them:
·Boiled cabbage. Researchers found that the smell of boiled
cabbage could cause "serious stress-related symptoms"
in children. Of the 12 children tested, 11 of them reported increased
anxiety and fear. Researchers also found the children had high
blood pressure and heart rate when subjected to the smell of
boiled cabbage. Further, the study concluded that boiled cabbage
may cause heart attacks and strokes among children under the
age of 13. One child tested enjoyed the smell and taste of the
boiled cabbage. However, researchers found the child to be without
·Turnip greens. According to the study, 100 percent of
all individuals who ate turnip greens will be dead in 100 years.
Researchers found that the acidic juice in the greens, as well
as in spinach and mustard greens, causes "normal aging"
of body organs, leading eventually to "death." However,
researches couldn't specify if death was associated directly
with turnip greens or with the natural aging process.
·Brussel sprouts. Researchers found brussel sprouts to
contain a chemical known as Notagonna-eattitt 12. The chemical,
a very potent hexipolycarbon, causes severe temper tantrums in
children. Side effects may include screaming, hitting, crying,
throwing of food, pouting and even anger. All 12 of the children
tested reacted negatively to Notagonna-eattitt 12.
·Potted meat. Potted meat, the study concluded, contained
enough harmful ingredients to "exterminate an entire race
of people." Researches that found that when mixed with crackers,
potted meat becomes "less fatal." However, among 134
prisoners forced to eat potted meat, 133 vowed to never again
commit a crime at the threat of having to eat more potted meat
on crackers. One of the inmates died after being stabbed in the
shower, a direct result of having eaten potted meat.
·Pinto beans. The study stated that all 100 subjects who
wear given pinto beans reported a significant increase in "flatulence."
Researchers rated the stigma a perfect 10 on the Flatulency Scale.
Test subjects also reported increased anxiety and embarrassment
in public situations. The subjects also had fewer friends and
were often criticized by family members. Among the subjects who
were single, 90 percent reported increased difficulty in dating.
Sixty-five percent of the married subjects said they were forced
to sleep on the couch more often and experienced an increase
in marital tension.
I hope you will find the information in this report to be very
useful. I recommend you cutout this column and place it on the
fridge next to the grocery list, just to keep you from innocently
purchasing any of the items above.
For more information, you may contact the National Council on
Nasty Foods or visit my website at www.uga.edu/arches/~fouche.
Adam Fouche is a reporter for MainStreet Newspapers. His e-mail
address is firstname.lastname@example.org.