The ten local prostate cancer patients who joined to form The Brotherhood of the Blue Bottle (BBB) celebrated completion of their proton therapy treatment at the ProCure Somerset facility in June. The group is named after the bottles they received to make sure they drank the necessary amount of water before the treatment.
Many BBB members credit the close bond with fellow cancer fighters as a major confidence and morale booster during the course of their treatments: “We’ve come together here through sharing our experience,” Sparta-based patient, Matt Iacobazzo said. “We are constantly asking each other questions about our treatments – ‘What happened to you?’, ‘How do you feel?’, ‘Are you having trouble with this?’ It has been immensely helpful to identify with these guys.”
Another common bond among the brotherhood was the thorough research each man and his family performed in order to identify the best treatment option for their diagnoses: “Ninety-nine percent of my fellow graduates did their homework,” Piscataway resident Tom Patania said. “Each one of us performed extensive personal research to arrive at proton therapy as our chosen treatment option. Everyone wanted the same thing: the least invasive treatment option with minimal side effects.”
The BBB has not only bonded over shared tribulations, but also over shared results. Each patient who has had his follow up appointment has experienced lower PSA (prostate-specific antigen) levels compared to his pre-treatment readings: “I am fairly ecstatic in regards to my PSA rating,” Iacobazzo said. “It has been reduced by 75 percent, which itself is great news, but the better news is that my uncontrolled cell growth has been interrupted so that the cells’ ability to replicate has been altered; they can no longer metastasize and spread. Armed with this positive news I can, in good conscience, recommend and comment favorably on ProCure and results of this groundbreaking therapy.”
Celebrating the milestone of their treatment completion with family members and friends, the patients of The BBB stressed the value of their newly formed support group.