Sir Peter Leitch was in Dunedin yesterday to visit the
laboratory that tests his urine to detect if any bladder
cancer has returned. Photo by Jane Dawber.
Former Mad Butcher owner Sir Peter Leitch will not go
down without a fight, and was in Dunedin yesterday to see the
laboratory helping him battle bladder cancer.
Sir Peter (68) visited the commercial laboratory of Pacific
Edge in Dunedin, where he sends a monthly urine sample to
detect bladder cancer. He later flew home to Auckland to
watch the Shane Cameron fight last night.
Sir Peter has been fighting his own fight.
A week before Christmas, a few years ago, he was diagnosed
with a rare form of aggressive bladder cancer, he said.
"I remembered the doctor saying, 'I've got some good news and
The bad news had him crying in the car park; the good news
was the cancer had been found early.
But getting to that diagnosis took some pushing, he said.
He saw his doctor after feeling "funny".
"There was no pain. I just felt uncomfortable. No-one knows
your body better than yourself and if you're not feeling
100%, you should go to the doctor."
His doctor gave him antibiotics for a bladder infection and
made him an appointment with a specialist after Christmas.
Unwilling to wait, Sir Peter called the specialist and got an
appointment for the next day.
People should not wait and if they were not happy with a
doctor's advice, they should get a new doctor, he said.
His older brother died of bowel cancer because he did not see
a doctor soon enough.
"I want to see more men going to the doctor and not dying
like my brother."
Life was too precious to gamble.
"Cancer goes to sleep. I don't think you're ever cured and it
can come back and bite you in the bum anytime, and at times,
it can come back real quick, like a bushfire."
He sent urine samples to the lab in Dunedin monthly to give
him peace of mind, between appointments for the traditional
testing with his urologist, he said.
Pacific Edge chief executive David Darling said the Cxbladder
detection test underwent 10 years of research and development
before being launched in New Zealand and Australia. It was
soon to be available in Spain and the United States.