In July 2018, Jennifer Massey-Kapcsos’s father was diagnosed with prostate cancer.
After suffering problems with urination, her father decided to seek medical attention. However, by the time he was diagnosed, the cancer had already spread to his pelvis, Massey-Kapcsos said.
Over the next four years, her father sought treatments before losing his battle to prostate cancer in July 2022.
Her father was never one to get regular checkups by his physician — and that’s not uncommon among men, Massey-Kapcsos said.
Men tend to be more hesitant than women to get tested and screened for health concerns, especially for prostate cancer, said Gayle Wilkins, a registered nurse and secretary with Wheels for Wellness.
“Prostate relates to your reproductive organs, and men don’t tend to talk about their private parts,” she said. “(Prostate cancer is) almost as frequent as breast cancer. It can sneak up on you.”
Massey-Kapcsos is making it her mission to spread the importance of screenings — especially within her family. A few months ago, her husband Chris Kapcsos received various screenings and discovered cancer cells in a section of his prostate.
By catching it early, Kapcsos was a good candidate for having his prostate surgically removed. In August, he was pronounced cancer free.
Now, Wheels for Wellness, a Fort Worth-based nonprofit, is pushing Tarrant County residents to break the stigma and get regularly tested for prostate cancer.
Founded in 2016, the nonprofit promotes the screening, care and cure of prostate cancer during its annual September car show in downtown Fort Worth.
The organization partners with the Prostate Cancer fund at Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital Fort Worth to provide free prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood tests for men aged 40 years and older. PSA is a protein produced by normal, as well as malignant cells of the prostate gland, according to the National Cancer Institute.
A laboratory is contracted to administer the tests by a finger prick and drop of blood. Once tested, individuals are notified of test results within 7 to 10 days.
IF YOU GO:
What: Wheels for Wellness Downtown Fort Worth Fall Car Show
When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sept. 16; the free PSA screenings will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Where: Downtown Fort Worth/Sundance Square between 4th and 9th streets. PSA screenings will be on 6th Street between Houston and Main.
Admission: The event is free for spectators. Those interested in displaying their cars pay a $40 day-of registration fee.
When someone is tested through the PSA test, the score is based on how abnormal the cancer cells look under a microscope. If an individual’s test score is above 4, it is recommended he visit his primary care doctor as soon as possible for further testing.
Out of 100 men, about 13 will get prostate cancer in their lifetime and about 2 to 3 will die from it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Through its continuous efforts, Wheels for Wellness wants to ensure men live healthier lives. Over the past six years, the organization has administered over 1,100 free prostate tests.
“We’ve had men who have come to us, who discovered [prostate cancer] early from our tests and can’t thank us enough,” Chuck Nixon, president of Wheels for Wellness, said. “There are other men who die from it, because it spreads within their body. Why take a chance, at least get tested.”
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