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Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy?                y Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y

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Unread 07-31-2011, 07:58 AM
Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y

I have no doubt that GYN's can do hysterectomies. They do them all of the time.
My concern is for those of us that have had the threat of cancer, even a pre-cancerous condition.

Are these doctors good enough, in your opinion?

MY regular GYN found the tumor (benign) and complex hyperplasia atypia cells when he took a sample during the tumor removal (outpatient surgery). I will be always grateful to him for that. The problem was, that he did not think that it was a problem and I had to "pull teeth" to get him to take a confirming biopsy. The second biopsy turned up the same cells.

I guess he thought it was no "big deal," as" the cells were not cancer." Yes, he was right, but I did some research and found out that 30%-40% eventually turn to cancer. It is just that sometimes the cancer will develop slowly, and other times it will develop quickly. Who knows what was in my uterus, tubes, cervix, and ovaries?

I talked to two pathologists that suggested a hysterectomy.
One was a family friend.

I decided that my regular doctor (gyn) was not skilled enough for this once-in- a lifetime surgery.
I "ran" to the best cancer hospital in our state (California).
All of the doctors that were on the gyn/oncology/surgery list held excellent credentials and were very nice.

It was really hard to choose a doctor, so I decided to have an office visit with one. After talking for almost 45 minutes with him, my dh and I decided that he was going to do my surgery.

I don't think that all women seek out the GYN/oncologist to do their hysterectomies. Many rely on their regular GYN's to do their surgeries. This is fine if nothing goes wrong and you do not have cancer at all, anywhere. The problem is if it ends up that you do have cancer, and quick decisions about what to do need to be made while you are on the operating room table.
I was prepared to lose my ovaries and possibly some lymph nodes.

Also, I wanted to start all of this at a cancer hospital. I did not want this to start at the local, regular hospital.
I have had cases where family members allowed their regular hospital to treat them (they had different cancers) and the local hospital was just not skilled enough.
They did not know what to immediately do in the same manner that the cancer hospital and doctor's did. They wasted precious time and insurance money.
By the time the family member begged to be transferred to a more skilled cancer hospital, almost all of their insurance money was gone 75%, and the transfer was harder to get.
By the time they got to the cancer hospital, they were already at the end stages of their disease.

This was not happening to me.
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Unread 07-31-2011, 09:36 AM
Re: Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y

If I could have a "do over" I would ask for a referral to a gyn/onc to do the surgery. My ob/gyn had a second surgeon come in to assist him but they botched the lymph node sampling leaving me with a lot of unanswered questions!
Unread 07-31-2011, 10:18 AM
Re: Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y

I am sorry that happened, but now you can let others know so that they can learn from your experience.
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Unread 07-31-2011, 10:56 AM
Re: Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y

My originally scheduled surgery would have been performed by a gyn with a gyn/onc present but I decided I wanted a gyn/onc in charge of the surgery and not just present so I cancelled the original surgery and rescheduled with a gyn/onc recommended by one of my husband's colleagues. Funnily enough she turned out to be the same gyn/onc who would have been present had I gone through with the original surgery.
Unread 07-31-2011, 12:07 PM
Re: Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y

I had a gyn/onc perform my surgery as well. My primary care doc is the one who usually does my annual exams, however when I was referred to an ob/gyn I was not impressed. I find that a lot - not all - but many focus more on the ob side of things and let the gyn issues fall to the wayside. I am not a wait and see kind of person, and when the doctor doesn't even make mention on family history I tend to run the other way. Being in the military I've ended up with a new doctor every couple of years so I needed to be sure I had someone on my side who knew what they were doing and knew what to do if something was found. I think this has helped my anxiety levels regarding the surgery as well. I know my gyn/onc has patients who actually have cancer but he never makes me feel like I'm being a hypochondriac when I'm talking with him and always listens to my thoughts and concerns, not to mention he's concerned about my mental well being as well.
Unread 08-01-2011, 09:14 AM
Re: Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y

I stand firm in ALWAYS recommending a gyn/onco when cancer is even suspected. They have a higher training to pick up on things that might not be so obvious to an ob/gyn. I feel ob/gyns are fine for those that have other issues related to having a hyster, but why mess around with something as serious as a cancerous cell?
Unread 08-01-2011, 12:14 PM
Re: Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y

I agree with Vega. When there is potential for cancer an gyn/onc is the best choice.

My regulary ob/gyn did my surgery, but there was no concern about cancer with me at the time; just fibroids. He did tell me that it was his standard practice to do a frozen section of tissue for a quick pathology report during surgery. In my case it turned out to be cancer (shocked the doc) and he proceeded accordingly. After surgery I was then referred to a gyn/onc for follow up treatment.
Unread 08-01-2011, 12:18 PM
Re: Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y

My GYN is the one who recommended I have my proceedure done my an Oncological GYN...he also did it Robotically - A Must, I think! I have 5 tiny incisions as opposed to a large, lateral one. I did have a possibility of cancer & he was prepared for the worst when he went in, but thankfully it all turned out fine. I did have severe endometriosis - my other ovarie was attached to my intestine and also had 6 cent. fibroid. I feel so fortunate my GYN sent me to this surgeon & I would recommend anyone who has to have this proceedure done to do the same. Hope this helps. Good Luck & God Bless!
Unread 08-01-2011, 01:20 PM
Re: Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y

Trust me on this one. If there is even a hint that there might be cancer, even a remote possibility, have your hysterectomy done by a gyn/onc. There is no doubt this will save you stress, worry, confusion.
Unread 08-01-2011, 03:48 PM
Re: Is Your Regular GYN Good Enough To Perform Your Hysterectomy? y


I didn't know about this wonderful site before my TAH/BSO for severe atypical complex hyperplasia and a questionable cyst on one of my ovaries.
By the Grace of God, all the pathology and pelvic washing came back negative for any cancer cells. BUT, if I had to do it all over again, I would have put away my paralyzing fear, done my research (which I usually do but I was so frightened I couldn't think clearly) and would have absolutely gone with a gyn/onc. A regular gyn did the surgery and all turned out fine; I guess I was one of the luck ones, for this surgery.


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