Rocky View County resident Richard Bosomworth is a prostate cancer survivor and now spends time volunteering with the Man Van helping other men take the simple blood test.

He was in Airdrie last week with the Man Van at Genesis Place. He was helping men fill out their information so they could do the 15-minute PSA (prostate-specific antigen) blood test. The test monitors your PSA and when it starts to rise, that's when the risk of prostate cancer also rises

Bosomworth father was diagnosed with prostate cancer, which was the reason why he started getting tested in his early 40s to make sure he would stay healthy.

"I did it yearly till the age of about 45 or 46. Then I got a call back from the doctor and he said my number had changed and gone up. They continued to monitor it until I was about 50."

Shortly after, Bosomworth opted to have his prostate removed before it had a chance to cause any problems and get out of the prostate itself. Bosomworth went on to talk about what his whole experience was like.

"The word c (cancer) is a very stressful word to hear. The biggest thing you can do if you get that call is don't do it by yourself, bring somebody with you and tell people around you what is going on. Make sure people at work know why you might be grouchy that day."

Once his prostate was removed, the stress level didn't go away right away because there could be side effects and you have to be tested regularly for the next couple of years. After five years when they say 'we will look at you once a year like everybody else', it's a lot less stressful."

Knowing that he and his family have gone through this process before with his father, Bosomworth stated they knew what they would end up going through.

"It probably didn't scare me as badly as it might have scared somebody else, just because I was slightly prepared for it."

After taking early retirement in his mid-50s, he needed to do something to fill his time that was rewarding. That's how he decided to start volunteering for the Man Van. Bosomworth reaffirmed how important it is to get checked regularly once you reach the age of 40.

"Slight needle prick in your arm, 15 minutes, once a year, could be the easiest and best health decision you make. Without a diagnosis, following along or understanding what's going on in your body you are blind. The PSA test was the only test that found it for me, I had no other symptoms."

When asked, Bosomworth is more than willing to meet with anybody and share his story about dealing with and surviving prostate cancer.

Since the Man Van first started operations back in 2009, they have tested 67,000 men, serving around 7,000 each year.

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