“Prostate cancer doesn’t care how fit you are, how high you climb or how much you serve your country….. I am living proof that early detection saves lives.” – Karim Mella
In October of last year IPCF chairman Dr. Patel performed surgery on his 5000th patient, our very own Karim. A striking testimonial and profound spirit, we are thrilled to feature him as our “Face for PSA Testing.” Strongly believing that his survival hinged on early detection, he has generously accepted this role. We express sincere gratitude for the time that he has so willingly volunteered, his impact is cannot be measured!
May 21st 2011, Karim Mella ascends Mount Everest unaware of the underlying shock soon to come. A diagnosis that would make even this most recent feat almost insignificant. For a man not easily intimidated, the words ‘You have prostate cancer’ proved to strike a brutal mental blow.
A marvelous man in his endeavors, Karim Mella is a life that could have been a great loss if not saved through the results of PSA testing. His accomplishments as a physically fit 44-year-old father and husband would leave most anyone certain that his health warranted little concern for decline.
Since age 11 Karim has been climbing the mountains of the Dominican Republic. Serving as a sergeant in the military he has visited and explored 22 countries including South America, Africa, Alaska, Argentina and Peru. All of this leading to his most impressive feat yet, conquering Mount Everest. After climbing Everest in May of 2011 Mella felt invisible he says, unknowingly however, cancer WILL follow you to the top of the world.
Karim showed no symptoms of prostate cancer upon his return check-up. Luckily you may say, his PSA test results returned with high numbers indicating a possible complication with the prostate. Under the recommendations of Dr. Patel this lead to a cancerous biopsy and finally a frightening diagnosis, ‘You have Prostate Cancer’.
Concerned about the outlook for his future Karim confided in Patel for reassurance. With confidence Dr. Patel explained that key factors were acting in Karim’s favor: “Not only have we diagnosed at an early age, but also at an early grade within the early stages of progression.”
After his surgery in October of 2011 Karim exhibits little hesitation as he jumps right back into life…literally (watch the video)! Completing a Half-Ironman in May 2012 he continues to prepare for the New York City Ironman in August of this year. Also he has organized a trip to the Dominican Republic where he will lead 50 low-income children on an expedition into the beautiful mountains in which he begun his journey.
“Cancer does not discriminate. Awareness is our most powerful weapon.”
These are the words of Karim Mella as he advocates the use of PSA testing in the early detection, diagnosis, and treatment of prostate diseases. He thanks Celebration Health and Dr. Patel his words being, “I could not have asked for any better.”
Follow Karim’s lead by joining his signature on our petition demanding that the USPSTF withdraw recommendations against PSA testing.