Baptist Medical Center to offer free prostate screening

Published 5:17 pm Friday, September 11, 2009

When Calera resident Roger Lumpkin entered the sliding glass doors of the Shelby Baptist Medical Center last year, he had no idea his life was about to change.

Lumpkin, whose wife, Susan, is a data quality analyst at the hospital, had taken advantage of Baptist’s annual free prostate screening sessions for years. But this visit was different.

“I was just floored when they told me I had prostate cancer,” Roger Lumpkin said. “I really wasn’t aware that it was there. I had no family history of it or anything.”

After Roger Lumpkin completed the prostate screening, doctors noticed his prostate-specific antigen was a little high. Because PSA is a key indicator of prostate problems, the hospital personnel contacted him and scheduled a follow-up visit.

When doctors performed a biopsy on Roger Lumpkin’s prostate gland, they discovered he had early stage prostate cancer.

“A PSA of four used to be considered elevated. If you had an elevated PSA level, it raised suspicions that you may have prostate cancer,” Susan Lumpkin explained. “But a few years ago, they reduced that elevated number to 2.5 because doctors found that a small percentage of men could have prostate cancer at that level.”

Since doctors discovered Roger Lumpkin’s cancer early, the Lumpkins had several options after the diagnosis was made. However, the Calera man had already made up his mind.

“I have never had a doctor sit down and give us his time like that. His whole demeanor was just tremendous,” Roger Lumpkin said of Urologist Jason Burrus. “We knew what we wanted to do. I thought the surgical option would be the best way to go.”

A few weeks later, doctors at the hospital used the DaVinci robotic surgery system to safely remove Roger Lumpkin’s prostate gland. Because doctors used the robotic system, the surgeons were able to perform the prostatectomy as noninvasively as possible, and were able to minimize recovery time, Roger Lumpkin said.

Since his surgery, Roger Lumpkin has returned to the hospital several times for follow-up visits. Every cancer test run since his surgery has come back negative.

This year, the Lumpkins and hospital officials are urging more middle-aged males to take advantage of Baptist’s free prostate screenings.

“Roger is a classic example of why we want men to come take advantage of our free screenings,” said April Weaver, director of business development and marketing at the hospital. “We are able to handle a lot of patients in a short amount of time, and we try to make it as convenient as possible.”

“It is so fast. I was in and out in 20 minutes,” Roger Lumpkin added. “If you catch it early enough, it makes it much easier to get rid of.”

Shelby Baptist Medical Center is holding its free prostate screening sessions Sept. 22-24 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. each day.

The screenings will he held at the Physicians Center behind the hospital’s north parking deck, and appointments are required. To schedule an appointment, call 1-877-222-7847.