Getting through prostate cancer treatment together

Icon Writers / 17 Sep, 2019

Trevor and Florence share their cancer journey

For Trevor Fergusson and his wife Florence, their peaceful retirement became much more stressful when Trevor was told his prostate cancer had returned, 16 years after his initial diagnosis. Although many things have changed since he first went through cancer treatment, Trevor and Florence’s commitment to each other and motivation to beat the cancer remain equally as strong.

Trevor was first diagnosed with early prostate cancer in 2003 while he was living in Brisbane. As he has a mechanical heart valve, this meant he was unable to have surgery as a treatment option and went on to receive radiation therapy treatment in Brisbane’s CBD.

“My prognosis at the time wasn’t terribly optimistic. I received radiation therapy every day for seven weeks which worked well, but I always knew it would return one day, and here I am now,” Trevor said.

Over the next 14 years, following his move to the North Lakes Retirement Resort, Trevor got regular check-ups and blood tests at his local GP to monitor whether the cancer had returned. When Trevor developed hip and back pain and a test found that his PSA levels had changed, Trevor was referred to Icon Cancer Centre North Lakes for treatment. He was able to see both a Medical Oncologist and Radiation Oncologist within the centre, and receive radiation therapy treatment and chemotherapy treatment at the same time.

“When I was told it had come back, I immediately thought how on earth am I going to get to the city now – Flo doesn’t drive anymore. We would’ve needed to stay in Brisbane,” Trevor said.

“It’s like a gift having the centre at North Lakes.”

Icon North Lakes, in partnership with Cancer Council, also offers a complementary patient transport service for local patients. For Trevor and Florence, the Transport to Treatment bus made getting to and from appointments much easier.

“We would have had to have been calling our children. They’re always available if we need them but we don’t want to hassle them all the time.”

In addition to radiation therapy and chemotherapy services, Icon North Lakes houses a pharmacy, pathology and radiology services provided by QScan Radiology Clinic.

Trevor, who was able to pick up his medication from the pharmacy during his first visit to Icon, says having everything in the one place was “absolutely terrific”.

“Everyone’s been so helpful. We feel very lucky,” Trevor said.

Trevor has now finished his radiation therapy and chemotherapy treatment and is thankful for his care team at Icon North Lakes.

“It was great that there was no wait list, I never had to wait and we got to know all the staff by name. It’s all been a very pleasant experience considering it’s a place you don’t really want to be. Compared to sitting in a waiting room at a big hospital, this is paradise.”

Florence, who has been by Trevor’s side at every appointment and treatment session, says that while handling his medication was quite a responsibility, having each other made everything easier.

“We’ve been married a long time. We take care of each other – that’s what you do.”

“When we were told Trevor’s cancer had come back, I said to him you just have to accept these things. We were very lucky that it went away in the first place and together we can get through it.”

They look forward to getting back into the swing of things, playing bowls with the club at their retirement resort and spending time with their children and grandchildren.

View all Iconic Community


Contact us
Become a patient