Don Crosswell's Story
da Vinci Surgery—Smaller Incisions, Faster Recovery
When Glades County resident Don Crosswell went to primary care physician for a checkup, he thought his health was normal. Instead, a PSA, a routine blood test for men age 50 and older, indicated a problem.
Following a referral, Don, 57, sought answers from urologist Omar Benitez, M.D.
A biopsy revealed that Don had prostate cancer. "I didn't expect that," Don says.
"I wasn't sick and I didn't feel like anything was wrong."
Dr. Benitez offered Don several options, including surgery to remove the prostate. "Once we talked about what was important to him, I realized Don wanted to be cured of cancer," Dr. Benitez says. "He didn't want hormones, or for us to keep surveillance on the cancer. He wanted it gone."
Dr. Benitez removed Don's prostate using robotic surgery with a device called
"da Vinci." By making small incisions through Don's abdomen and belly button, Dr. Benitez minimized the amount of time Don was under anesthesia and shortened his hospital stay. He also preserved Don's continence and sexual function.
"Don was amazing," Dr. Benitez says. "He was back to work and healed within six weeks. Fortunately, with this type of surgery, he had fairly common results."
Dr. Benitez will monitor Don's progress for the next five years to make sure he stays healthy. Meanwhile, Don has returned to the life he loves—working, riding motorcycles, playing guitar and visiting with friends. "I never thought about something like cancer happening to me," Don says. "Now, I know it can happen to anyone. I got the help I needed before it was too late."
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