Sunday, 22 November

Oxfordshire Prostate Cancer Support Group


Newsletter      November 2015



An important figure in OPCSG will be stepping down at the next AGM: George Goldsmith has been absolutely central to our success over five years, and it will soon be someone else’s turn to act as Secretary.  We need new Committee members as well – so please start thinking now whether you can step forward to make a contribution, and talk to me or any Committee member if you want more information.  Unless the Committee grows the group will falter.  Without a Secretary it cannot function.


Saturday 5 December

7 p.m., The Ferryman, Bablock Hythe, Northmoor, OX29 5AT.

Price £8.50 including the skittles.  Menu choices: fish and chips, chicken and chips, sausage and chips, vegetarian.  Desserts available on the night at extra cost.

Gentlemen – the ladies won all the prizes last year, so it’s time for you to show some male skills.

To book your places please make out a cheque to ‘OPCSG’ and send it to OPCSG, c/o John Goldsmith, 21 Freeborn Close, Kidlington, OX5 2BH, tel. 01865 580152.

ED and BP (no, not a politician and an oil company)

Neil Carter’s article, attached to the last Newsletter, aroused a lot of positive comment.  One member wrote: “Re ED I don’t know whether my experience might also be helpful but I went to my GP recently and said that I had tried, I think, 4 different varieties of Viagra which he had prescribed and each one had been all right for a few weeks but then failed to have the right effect.  My GP was very sympathetic and was starting to search for an alternative when I asked him about the Blood Pressure tablets I have been on ever since I was diagnosed with prostate cancer.  He pointed out that ED is one of the possible side effects of the BP tablets I am on.  So he decided to change my BP tablets for a month to see whether this makes any difference on my ED.  It occurs to me that if it is the BP tablets that are the problem, this is why each ED tablet he had prescribed is ineffective.  I have only just started on the new BP tablets and haven't "tried" yet but can report back at the end of a month.”  If other members have experience of taking BP tablets at the same time as ED treatments it would be interesting to hear how you got on.


I have just updated the information on our website about companies which offer travel insurance to people with medical conditions, and in particular Pca.  We list three companies we know about (there are certainly others) which offer personalised insurance taking account of your medical history:  Fish Insurance:, call: 0333 331 3770. World First, call: 0345 90 80 161. All Clear:, call: 01708 339295.


Some members expressed an interest in learning more about the DGR which took place worldwide on the last Sunday in September.  Please have a look at their website via this link:


Many thanks to all who responded to the email appeal for volunteers to help at the fireworks.  OPCSG is extremely grateful to Bicester Round Table for allowing us to collect at their annual firework display on 7 November.  A team of eleven eager volunteers assembled at Pringle Field, next to Bicester Village, and after enjoying the bonfire and firework display stood at the two exits as the crowd was leaving.  The people of Bicester overwhelmed us with their generosity, contributing no less than £798 to our funds.  A wonderful evening: a great team, generous contributions and fine fireworks.  Thank you Bicester Round Table!


Friday the 13th. turned out well for a group of OPCSG members who attended an event organised by Cancer Research UK at the Oxford University Department of Oncology on the Old Road campus.  There was an opportunity to learn about CRUK’s work generally and its research in Oxford specifically – CRUK had invested £22 million in research in Oxford last year alone.  After lunch we visited two of the laboratories where advanced research is being undertaken relating to earlier detection of cancers and more personalised treatments.  A fascinating day, and an impressive array of dedicated and, for the most part, young researchers who allowed us generous access to their work.  CRUK will be involved in World Cancer Day 4 February 2016, and OPCSG will have a stall in the Town Hall as Oxford City Council marks the day.


This was one of our very best social/entertainment meetings. Ken Fitt, 88-year-old retired head teacher and in his own words ‘a jobbing musician for over 70 years’, spoke about ‘The growth of popular music in the twentieth century’, illustrating his talk with his own singing voice, his clarinet and saxophone.  With amazing vitality and stamina Ken held us enthralled for well over an hour.  It was a delight to watch the foot-stomping, head-nodding, smiling audience, who showed their tremendous approval of Ken’s tour de force.  Who else could convincingly impersonate Noel Coward, Elvis and Adele in the space of half an hour?  Thank you Ken!


The committee have agreed the following dates for group meetings in 2016:

25 January, talk on diet; 14 March AGM with Simon Brewster and Dr. Andrew Protheroe; 18 April quiz night with St. George theme; 20 June UCare; Sunday 26 June river cruise from Wallingford; 12 September Macmillan Cancer Care; 17 October tbc; 10 December skittles.

If you no longer wish to receive this Newsletter please let me know on or 01865 730110.  For news updates keep an eye on our website at

John Grundy                                                                

Chairman, OPCSG

Feedback: Please let us know what you think about Newsletter articles.  Any further comments on the ED discussion?  Any questions you would like to put to the speaker(s) on diet on 25 January?  Would you like to write a short article?  Keep in touch!