Doncaster man urges others to get checked after his own battle with cancer

A Doncaster man didn’t tell anyone that he was diagnosed with prostate cancer for 18 months but he now wants to urge other men to speak up instead of suffering in silence.

Monday, 13th September 2021, 10:51 am
Ben is urging men to get blood tests to prevent anyone going through what he has.

Ben Thomas known as ‘Bev’ went to the doctors after he started feeling pains in his back in 2019.

As he had chronic back pain he wasn’t too worried about the health issue but persisted with doctors until he was given a blood test.

Six months later he got the terrible news that he had prostate cancer.

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Ben, 65, from Bawtry, said: “It has been a true nightmare.

“I didn’t tell anyone that I had it until a few days ago.

“I’m a father of two sets of twins and I waited until I got the all clear to tell them I even had it in the first place.

“I burst out crying when I told them.”

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Ben chose to suffer in silence because he didn’t want to worry his family.

“My daughter was pregnant at the time,” he said.

“I couldn’t tell her and put that stress on her.

“I apologised to them for not being truthful but I couldn’t have them worrying for me all that time.”

Ben went through 37 rounds of radiotherapy and hormone injections all on his own – he would tell his family that he was out shopping when he was really in the hospital.

After reflecting on his experience he wants to urge other men in his position to get themselves checked out.

“What’s five minutes for a blood test?” he said.

“For you and for your family it could mean the world.

“If you're reading this please just go and get one done.

Cancer is the roughest ride and it can be heartbreaking.”

Ben didn’t tell a single person during his battle with cancer but is now ready to let the world know what he has been through.

“I know some blokes don’t want to speak up about things like this,” Ben said.

“But it’s important that we do.

“We need to start before it’s too late.”

Ben is now feeling well and his PSA has lowered to a healthy 0.28.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Liam Hoden, editor.