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Pathology results update Pathology results update

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  #1  
Unread 12-21-2005, 05:18 AM
Pathology results update

Well we saw my surgeon/gyn/onc yesterday - they had had a couple of meetings about my pathology results.

Basically the margins are 3.5mm and they generally prefer them to be 1cm. So they have mentioned radiation and we had a chat about it to another doctor in the radiotherapy department.

We've been recommended to see a fertility specialist - it's pretty much academic because of the endo, as it was so extensive that conceiving would be difficult. We're going to go as an information gathering exercise more than anything.

My symptoms from the radiation are likely to be more severe than average and of course I'll go through early menopause (am 38). It's a difficult decision. Our sex life has not been great of late and of course hubby is worried that the treatment will effect things permanently.

It's all mind numbing. If anyone has personal experiences of radiation I'd be grateful if you could share.

Thanks

Zoë xxx
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  #2  
Unread 12-21-2005, 05:38 AM
Pathology results update

Zoe - I had radiation last year at this time. The tumor I had removed was 4.3 cm. There's no physical pain involved with radiation. I was in the room for quite a long while, which bothered me because of the amount of radiation exposure, so I said as a mantra "healing energy" each time they zapped me. It helped. The first few weeks were great but then out of the blue, I developed an explosive case of the runs, which hung around until the day after my last treatment. I also lost interest in eating. (Not everyone has this problem.) I was not really nauseated, though -- food just didn't sound appealing. Probably because of these two reactions to the treatments, I was tired in the afternoons (thank God for old movies). I continued working 3/4 time, but I was lucky that I teach online, so I could teach from the ACS house in which I lived during the six weeks I was receiving radiation.

One thing I've noticed on this site is that most "sisters" who have cervical cancer receive radiation (in some cases external and internal) along with chemotherapy. I did not even though I've read in many places including the American Cancer Society website that it's the preferred treatment. You might want to ask your gyn/onc why they are choosing to do just radiation on you and not both radiation and chemo. I'm not saying that's what you should have; I'm just saying that I wish I had known to ask that question before I received treatment. It's just a suggestion.

Oh, and I found there's something mentally therapuetic about having treatments because you're doing something to eradicate the beast! May your treatments fly by quickly!!!

Happy Holidays to you -
  #3  
Unread 12-21-2005, 05:46 AM
Pathology results update

Thanks Ann - they did warn me about the runs! It's the long term effects that I'm most concerned about I think.

Just to clarify - I would have chemo too, but not heavy doses.

Happy holidays to you too :letsnow:

Z xxx
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  #4  
Unread 12-21-2005, 05:51 AM
Pathology results update

Zoe - I do have sexual difficulties, but my radiologist oncologist does not think the radiation is the culprit. She says that I've healed nicely. I've read other threads about radiation and its effect on future sexuality, and it just doesn't seem to be a problem for most people. Someone else will chime in - a ton of us have had radiation. Take care -
  #5  
Unread 12-21-2005, 07:51 PM
Pathology results update

Hi Zoe,
I had the standard treatment for cervical cancer, as you can see in my signature. The side effects are not horrible. I never came close to throwing up. Zofran controls that very well. Beginning the third week of treatment I had terrible diarhhea but I learned to control that with medication, immodium and lomotil. For the last 2 weeks of treatment, I had to remember to take medication around the clock. It seemed to take forever before I could totally stop worrying about it, but I am totally fine now. Sex is exactly the same as it always was, often it's better. I don't begin to understand that, but it's true. At the end of radiation I was told to have sex (or use a dialator) "every week or so" to keep the vagina open and working. That worked well for me. We went to the carribean 3 weeks after treatment ended and had a great vacation and great sex. I did have to make a couple of quick trips to the bathroom, but no sex problems. I understand your concerns, but radiation didn't change anything regarding sex. It forced us to have regular sex, and that was a good thing for our relationship, and for our sex life!

I wouldn't wish radiation with chemo on anyone, but it really wasn't as bad as I had expected. Not nearly! It is very doable. You just have to take it one day at a time, and slough through it. It's over in a few weeks. Then you can get on with a cancer free life! It's well worth it.

Hugs and comfort,
janie
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