An NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center
Johnny Lopez
During a routine checkup in 2006, Johnny Lopez was shocked to learn that his prostate specific antigen (PSA) level was 19. Biopsies were ordered, a Gleason score of seven was determined and Lopez’s life as he knew it changed forever. “They told me I had prostate cancer,” he recalls.
Lopez had surgery to remove his prostate. Then he worked with Tanya Dorff, M.D. at City of Hope to come up with a customized treatment plan, mainly using hormone therapy to control any future prostate cancer growth, as well as some radiation.
Now, 12 years later, when the research said he’d only be around for five, Lopez isn’t slowing down. He’s still researching, still learning and still open to the numerous treatment possibilities that exist. As far as side effects go, Lopez has been lucky. He hasn’t had any adverse reactions to his medications. For him, the hardest part of this journey has been its emotional toll. But the support of his wife, family and Dorff have kept him in an optimistic frame of mind.
“This might sound weird, but my situation kind of turned out to be a blessing. I feel so blessed now. I am so grateful now. It changed my life in a positive way, and I don't mind it,” Lopez says.