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  #11  
Unread 04-12-2002, 08:27 PM
the 'c' word

Hi, Jeanmarie -

Just sending you good thoughts and hugs!

I know your fear. I know the devastation of the word "cancer", and that when you consider yourself a healthy person, it comes out of nowhere! And I have had those days when I started to cry and didn't know how to stop. I know there are more ahead. But there are lots of good days. You have people who love you - hang on to them. Keep hold of a positive attitude and a sense of humor - they'll help you through the hard times. Know it's ok to be scared and to cry and to rant and rave a bit as well!

Definitely find a support group (in person or online) of people with the type of cancer you are facing. Learn about your enemy and find the strength through any sources you can to fight it!

Hang in there!!
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  #12  
Unread 04-13-2002, 08:12 AM
the 'c' word

Hi Jeannemarie,

I want to let you know that I, too, was diagnosed with the "c" word, and up until a cone biopsy that diagnosed me with cervical cancer, all pathology came back with the diagnosis of severe dysplasia. I am 43 years old and was completely in shock. I cried for two days, then I become very positive. It helped that the GYN oncologist that I saw told me that it was in the early stages, he thought, and this would be a six week bump in the road in my life. The National Cancer Institute had a list of guidelines for surgery/therapy depending on grade of cancer. The web site is cancer.gov. It was helpful to me just having basic information on how this cancer would be treated. I never really focused on this web site (or any other besides HysterSisters) because I just wanted info initially, and then I was looking for support! I became very positive, and I got into a program (written by a nurse) that had positive pre-surgery relaxation tape and book and did that every day prior to surgery. It definitely relaxed me, and I still do it for relaxation. Mentally, I prepared myself to do the best I could do.

I had a radical hysterectomy on 4/3/02 and am feeling great now. They removed everything, including tissue that anchors the uterus to the bladder ureters, which also disturbed the nerves there so I had to come home with a Foley catheter, which was removed on Day 7 post op with no problems voiding afterwards. They took (8, I think) lymph nodes so they could make sure that the cancer had not spread there. I just got back the pathology results, and it confirmed the cancer was only in the cervix and had not spread, not even to the lymph nodes.

I am very thankful that a hysterectomy was able to save my life, and I feel like I have a new lease on life now!

Feel free to send me a private message. Sending you the calm and positive thoughts to get you through this.
  #13  
Unread 04-14-2002, 12:33 AM
the dreaded 'c'

Hi,

while I'm sorry for the circumstances that have caused me to even have to post in such a forum, let me just add an old saying: "better late than never", cause I'll probably be here often in the days to come.

I'm 36 years old, 5'10, weigh 223...always been a skinny kid, grew up to be a slender woman, with the exception of my belly, or "pooch". Up until last year, I thought I was in pretty good health...so good, in fact, that I neglected to schedule those pesky "well woman" annual visits...you know, the Pap, etc. I have a 14-yo son who is the absolute joy of my world. I had a miscarriage 7.5 yrs ago; don't know why, it just happened, end of the 1st trimester - beginning of the 2nd. I was told that a D&C was done afterwards, even tho the mc happened at home and, I almost want to say that the docs in ER doubted my word, despite the fact that EMS took me in and I was bleeding heavily. (guess I didn't look like I'd been pregnant)...whatever the case, long story, condensed version...I spent the nite at the hospital, went home next day with instructions to see my ob/gyn in 6 weeks. Well, I tried to be good, and when I went to see the dr 6 wks later, he sent me home without seeing me beyond, "oh no, you're too early; I'll have my nurse call and schedule an appt for you in 2 weeks."

Well guess what...no call came, and I felt fine, so I didn't go back. I've moved twice since then, and my sisters & sisterfriends kept telling me, "girl go...even if you feel fine, you need to at least get your annual thing done." Needless to say, for whatever reason, I finally took myself to a doctor last March who was appalled!!! when my answerto the question "last pelvic?" turned out to be "7 years".

During that exam, she discovered a cervical polyp, explained what it was, its location, and next course of action. She referred me to an ob/gyn and it was removed a few weeks later, biopsy done, negative results. When I returned to the ob/gyn a few months later, a polyp had returned. It was removed, biopsied, and again, negative results. A follow-up pap revealed atypical squamous cells, so of course antibiotics followed to clear that up. From March to December, I visited the ob/gyn's office more times than I care to count or remember. Just before Christmas, she scheduled me for a mammogram. (Odd, I thought...I'm only 35, too soon for that) Well, that showed a white mass behind one breast, so she scheduled me for an ultrasound. I remember her asking me "have we ever done a pelvic u/s on you?" to which I replied "no". It wasn't until I got to work and looked at the radiology appt form that I saw "L adnexal mass - pelvic u/s" as well as the "breast mass u/s". After all this, I finally got the results last Weds and she said "you've got at least one fibroid that's 8 cm x 7 cm x 3 cm" and more bloodwork. Got a call from her nurse to return to her office this past Friday. Evidently I've been getting "screened" for cancer, doesn't mean that I HAVE IT, but this final round of bloodwork shows a very high number on - heck I can't even think of what it is. But she told me that fibroids can elevate that number, and so can cysts. (Something else came up about an ovary looking suspect, "do you want more kids? no? well I would recommend a hysterectomy, but that's not my specialty...I've made an appt for you to see a gyno-oncologist next Friday; I'm faxing your paperwork to him, would you like a copy of your file? Let me get that for you"...) I was in a daze pretty much and just felt weepy all over again. I was surprised because in the week since she told me about the fibroid(s), I've been doing my research, so I know about the different options. I was surprised, I guess, because she mentioned the "c", the "h", & the "possible cystic ovary" all in the same breath breath as "but this isn't really my area, so I don't know; that's why I'm sending you here."

Add to all of this, my libido has been off-the-scale for about 2 yrs now - and I mean, in the MOST negative way. I don't know why; it was one of the things that scared me into going for the check up last year. (That & the DH's crude comments about not giving him sex...oh yea, that's a real turn-on!) Also, I've always been highly emotional, and right now, EVERYTHING makes me cry. I'm cranky and downright *****y at times, and catch myself and it's like, dang, is that ME?!! I kind of thought I was pre-menopausal, but periods come every 28 days, like clockwork! this month though...whoa, 3 days heavy (first 2 were flooders) with quite a bit of what looks like clotting (I know it isn't, just can't think of the word right now) and day 4 almost nothing (normally I'm on 5-6 days, with day 6 being a "liner" day) and there's been a "just bearable" pain in my stomach on the left side that I never noticed before, and it's REALLY bad when I have to urinate.

whew, that's long...I'm sorry! I'm just so scared, I don't quite know what to do with myself. I couldn't believe that I went from cervical polyps to fibroids in the space of a year, and from fibroids to hysterectomy in a week's time! I was afraid to come to this particular thread, for fear that it would manifest itself and become real, you know? But hey, I guess it don't get much more real than this!! Again sorry so long, but it's hard to condense all my innermost fears and still sound halfway coherent, especially this late!!
thanks for reading...
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  #14  
Unread 04-14-2002, 08:15 AM
the 'c' word

Dear 'Nette:
Welcome to such a great and supportive website with women that really care and understand. I am new at this disease ( a few days ago diagnosed) and to this website so I can't offer much in the way of experience...just my postive vibes and wishes for peace in your heart.
Its such a comfort knowing that there are many many many people out there that are now welcoming you into their hearts.
Take care.
  #15  
Unread 04-15-2002, 05:23 PM
the 'c' word

Dear Nette,
I'm sending hugs and prayers your way.

It sounds like you really need both right now. That's a lot of information to process in a short time. My heart goes out to you. I truly hope that there is no "C" going on with you, despite some of the symptoms. When you talked about elevated levels of something, were you referring to CA-125? This is a marker that is often referred to in relation to cancer, but your CA-125 level can be elevated due to fibroids or endometriosis too.

Keep us posted on what is happening with you. We'll be here for you, every step of the way.

Beth
  #16  
Unread 04-15-2002, 05:57 PM
Keep on Smiling

Jeannemarie,
I wanted to tell you to try and keep your head up and keep smiling. I am 24 yrs old and when I was 21 yrs old, I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a tumor on might right ovary that was cancerous. I was so devasted that I didn't know what to do. I had two young children and was getting a divorce from my husband. (All a young age) I went through chemo, lupron, and radiation. At times I never thought I could make it, but with the Lord and the support of my family I have been in remission for 2 years. Valentine's Day is my new birth day as my family calls it. My doctor gave me some of the best advice. He said, " Keep your head up and keep a postive attitude". At times it is merely impossible to keep your head and to have a postive attitude, but it does help with the view of everything around you. When I was diagnosed that just took my right ovary. Now I am scheduled for a hyst on April 19th. I am scared, but it's probably for the best. My family said I should have done it 2 yrs ago. Who Knows? Well I just wanted to let you know that your not alone and if you ever just need to send a crying email, I will most definetly take the time to read it. I know everything will be okay for you. I will pray for you. Rich Blessings in everything you do.
  #17  
Unread 04-15-2002, 06:05 PM
the 'c' word

Dear Sweet Shara:
Thankyou for taking the time to reach out to me.
I am so grateful for people like you.
Everyday brings it's own set of challenges and I seem to be coping with the help of caring souls like you dear girl.

I realize every day how many things I am grateful for. And you are one.

Good luck to you as well. There is now one more person in the world that is rooting for you.

Keep in touch.
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