Cancer patient chooses life
CHRIS Bartlem has had multiple relapses of prostate cancer.
Now he is living with Micrometastasis, which means the cancer is too small to be detected and actively treated.
But Mr Bartlem is not complaining; he is determined to inspire others with his journey.
The Sarina resident said his experience had taught him what really mattered in life.
"It's about living or dying," he said.
"I chose living.
"The side effects don't seem like such a big deal.
"My wife has been a fantastic supporter."
Mr Bartlem is one of many Queenslanders in a similar situation.
Today, about 32,500 Queensland men are alive following a diagnosis of prostate cancer and about 4000 Queensland men will be newly diagnosed this year.
This month, the Cancer Council is calling on Queenslanders to be proactive about prostate cancer, urging men at risk to talk to their GP about the pros and cons of testing.
Should men have their health checked more often?
This poll ended on 22 September 2014.
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
Mr Bartlem said it wasn't as bad as many people made it out to be.
"There are more than one screening option available," he said.
"It's over and done with very quickly.
"Prostate cancer often doesn't have any symptoms, so it's important to get tested early.
"The alternative to not getting tested is much worse."
Mackay Prostate Cancer support group meet every month at the Mater Hospital. It can be contacted on 4942 0132.