Graham Rooms, 58, a retired firefighter, from Talaton, Devon, was given a talk about prostate cancer by charity volunteers but never imagined it would one day be applicable to him.
However, just nine months later, in May 2019, despite feeling perfectly healthy, Graham noticed his urination pressure had dropped slightly.
Remembering that such a tiny change could be a symptom, he got checked out and to his shock tests in October 2019 revealed he had an aggressive form of prostate cancer.
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While Rooms had his prostate removed in a four-hour operation, scans showed the cancer had already spread to his lymph nodes.
After a course of 37 radiotherapy sessions, doctors established Rooms couldn't be cured, but his condition is now monitored and suppressed with drugs.
"When I noticed a drop in urination pressure, I wasn't overly worried," Rooms, who lives with wife Karen, 58, and daughter, Emma, 22, explains. "Having to go home and share the diagnosis with my daughter was one of the darkest weekends of my life.
"Then finding out they couldn't cure it was as dark a day as the first as I knew I had it for life. Now, it's just a case of making every moment count."
After learning about potential symptoms in the session in September 2018, Rooms noticed a slight drop in urination pressure the following May.
Doctors referred Graham for a PSA test, which tests for a protein produced by the prostate gland that can be measured in the blood.
His PSA level was marginally high so they scheduled a second three weeks later, which showed it had increased again.
An MRI scan in August 2019 also flagged some potential signs and a biopsy was scheduled for the following month.
On October 3, following the biopsy, Rooms was told he had an aggressive grade cancer. "My wife was with me and there were a lot of tears," he says of the moment.
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On October 31, Graham had surgery to remove his prostate, but scans revealed the cancer had already spread beyond the prostate, to the seminal vesicles and bladder.
This meant he had to undergo a series of radiotherapy sessions, five days a week for seven weeks, to target the remaining cancer cells.
His PSA levels dropped until early 2022 when they began to rise again, and he was sent for a PET scan looking for cancerous microcells.
Results from a first scan in June showed one area of cancer in a lymph node, just outside pelvic region, but a second PET scan three months later found three cancer spots - two in the lymph nodes and one in the pelvic wall.
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Doctors have now advised they are no longer looking to cure Rooms, but hope to keep the disease under control.
In November 2022 he started on a hormone treatment and a chemotherapy drug and doctors have since been able to suppress his cancer.
It means Graham is able to live a more normal life between his monitoring sessions every two months.
He has to manage side effects from the drugs, including fatigue, weight gain and hair loss and also experiences chronic lymphoedema - painful swelling of the limbs as a result of his removed lymph nodes.
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Despite those difficulties Rooms says he is hoping to "live life to the full" and hopes that by sharing his story he will help raise awareness about the signs.
"I think it's brilliant it's being featured on EastEnders so people people will see the emotions that will unfold as he goes through the cancer journey and can be more aware of their risks," he explains. "It might make someone go to their GP and be checked out?
"I never would have questioned my symptoms if I hadn’t had that awareness session months earlier. Knowing what to look out for can really help save the lives of so many men."
For more information about the signs and symptoms visit Prostate Cancer UK's online risk checker.
Additional reporting SWNS.