Mickey Kerwin: Prostate Cancer

“I believe the greatest people in the world work there. They all treated me like family.”

Mickey was not always a Henry Ford Allegiance fan, but his recent experience at the Radiation Oncology – Tejada Center has changed his mind. “I had 39 radiation treatments there after prostate cancer surgery, and my experience was very satisfactory,” Mickey said. “I believe the greatest people in the world work there. They all treated me like family.”

Mickey chose to have his surgery out of town. When he learned that he would need extensive radiation treatment, however, he wanted to be able to receive it close to home. “That opened my eyes to what a great hospital we have in our community,” he said. “Over the two-month course of my treatment, I came to know the Henry Ford Allegiance staff on a first-name basis. They were all so friendly. They always took time to stop and talk with me, and they made me feel well cared for.”

Radiation oncologist Annette Kretzler, MD, also impressed Mickey. “She is very professional, caring and accessible, and she always took the time to answer my questions,” he said. With regard to his treatment, Mickey was pleased that he “never experienced a negative physical reaction to the radiation—absolutely no side effects.”

A naturally talkative person, Mickey often connected with his fellow radiation patients during his treatment at Henry Ford Allegiance Health. “Over a long course of therapy, patients tend to become friendly and offer each other support,” he said. “I remembered how scared I was on my first day of treatment, so when I noticed someone was coming in for the first time, I volunteered my support—and they were always so grateful.”

On his last day of treatment, Mickey’s wife, Sandra, surprised him by coming in with balloons and a cake. “I was so touched by that, it brought me to tears, and I was happy to celebrate with everyone who took care of me,” he said.

Since completing his radiation treatment at Henry Ford Allegiance Health, Mickey has had several “very good follow-up visits,” he said. “My PSA level is at zero, and I am feeling great.”  He recently volunteered to become a patient mentor through the Henry Ford Allegiance Lean on Me program. After completing his training, Mickey will share his experience and support with a patient who has been newly diagnosed with prostate cancer. 

There is no sure way to prevent breast cancer. But you may help lower your risk by maintaining a healthy body weight, limiting how much alcohol you drink and getting regular exercise.