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I didn't any symptons - anyone else? I didn't any symptons - anyone else?

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Unread 12-15-2009, 10:35 AM
I didn't any symptons - anyone else?

Hi Ladies,

so my surgery is scheduled for this Friday which is getting closer. I haven't been dwelling on it but I suspect that will change as it continues to get closer. I don't really feel scared but that too may change.

Has anyone else gotten the recommendation of TAH/BSO due to a mass being found on the ovary but have had no symtoms?

I didn't have any symptoms. I went in for my yearly check up and the doctor thought my uterus felt large and recommended I get an ultrasound. Turns out I have a large (10 centimeter) mass on my left ovary. I haven't had any symtoms that lead me to believe I had a problem. The only issue I had was a more frequent urge to urinate at night but I thought that may have been do to may age (48) based on all those commercials about it on TV. I certainly didn't have any urination problems during the day.

The blood test showed a CA125 level of 114 which is described as slightly elevated. I was referred to an ob/gyn oncologist who has recommended TAH/BSO.

I have been doing research on the web and this is regarded as a radical approach and usually when cancer is detected or there is severe pain and/or bleeding. We won't know if there is cancer until the surgery and I haven't had any of the other problems usually associated.

During the first meeting with the surgeon I was so happy when she said that she didn't believe there was cancer that I was pretty much agreeing with her recommendation without reservation. I just wanted the stuff out. After doing some research I think this approach is too radical for me and I want to go with a more conservative approach. Remove the left ovary with the mass but keep the other organs if they are in good shape with no sign of problems.

Since I don't have the typical symtoms for TAH/BSO I believe this is a better approach for me.
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Unread 12-15-2009, 10:50 AM
Re: I didn't any symptons - anyone else?

I too had a large mass (10 cm) on my ovary found by my doctor during my normal annual physical. I had no symptoms other than frequent urination and some lower back pain when I overdid. I also attributed these to my age (62). My doctor referred me to a gyno-oncologist who recommended a TAH/BSO. I talked to my regular doctor before deciding to go with what I also thought was a radical approach. He agreed with the gyn because of the size of the mass and my age. Apparently it is not very common for a woman my age to have such a large cyst. Since I went through menopause several years ago, I decided to go with their recommendation. The good news is the cyst was called a borderline tumor, so no treatment was needed once it was out. I understand your desire to just take the one ovary and mass. I might have decided to go that direction if I had been younger. Don't know if this will help you, but just wanted you to know that you are not alone.
Unread 12-15-2009, 11:05 AM
Re: I didn't any symptons - anyone else?

It seems that any bit of information helps. I get teary eyed when thinking that someone is kind enough to take time to reply to my posts. Thank you very much.
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Unread 12-15-2009, 02:02 PM
Re: I didn't any symptons - anyone else?

In July of this year I had a bit of discomfort on my lower right side and some slight bleeding. I'd had the discomfort for some time and had felt that kind of discomfort off and on for over 20 years. I'm 48.

They did an ultrasound and found a 7cm cyst on my right ovary. I scheduled my suggested TAH/BSO for months later (Nov 18th) because it would be better for my life i.e. work, season, hubby off from work.

In september I was having alot of problems with my stomach and bowels, my upper abdomen became distented. The GyN said I needed another ultrasound and found that the cyst was completely gone!

The GyN said she still wanted to go ahead with the TAH/BSO in November because:
"You would probably keep getting cysts"
"The formation of cysts could present as cancer later"
"Your almost at menopause anyway"
"Your periods are painful and heavy"

I've got to admit that when I found out that the cyst wasn't there anymore I questioned the decision to do a TAH/BSO...alot.

Needless to say, after all the waiting and pondering, I went ahead with it. Everything seems to be fine. Although I'm not sure I'm going to feel "so much better" like other hystersisters on the site may as I didn't have much for symptoms.

I guess I went ahead with it because:
I was done having children.
My insurance offers good coverage at this time.
I feel I'm fairly young, and would rather have this surgery when younger than older.
I didn't want to just get bad ovary out and then have to have another surgery later if other things "happened"
I was definitely ready to not have periods anymore.

These reasons may not be well received by other sisters on this site but that's how it went.

Small amount of Adenomyosis and Endometriosis found.
Unread 12-15-2009, 02:12 PM
Re: I didn't any symptons - anyone else?


Thank you for your input. I know that after doing some reading on this subject that everyone is different from their symtoms to their reasons for having the surgery. I think this would be so much easier if there was more of a common thread.

Hearing from you ladies that didn't have much in the way of symptoms is very helpful for me.

I am OK with the idea of the surgeon taking everything if she still feels that is the best option after she has a chance to see what she is dealing with.

It just seems so radical to me at this point because I haven't had the symptoms.

So, again. Thank you for you input. The more information I have, the better for me.
Unread 12-15-2009, 04:23 PM
Re: I didn't any symptons - anyone else?

EnglishIvy -

I had some heavy bleeding and gyn said "at your age you need a d&c" Well the D&C turned up endometrial cancer and that was it surgery was scheduled. I didn't have any other symptoms and no tests had ever indicated an issue.

If you are concerned make sure you get a second opinion and if there is a concern of cancer make sure you ask about having a gyn-oncologist there or doing the surgery.

Unread 12-16-2009, 07:54 AM
Re: I didn't any symptons - anyone else?

Hi, Many ovarian masses are non-cancerous and I am hoping this is true in your case. It is good you checked with a gyn/onc but if you are concerned re his/her recommendation for TAH/BSO perhaps you should seek another opinion from another gyn/onc? I hope you may obtain some assurance, solid advice from your surgeon when you discuss your conservative approach idea.
You also are most welcome to post in our CC forum re lack of symptoms, CA125 numbers etc.; the women there can be very well informed and helpful. Pls keep us updated.
Unread 12-16-2009, 09:06 AM
Re: I didn't any symptons - anyone else?

Hi EnglishIvy,

I can share my story as food for thought. During my yearly ob/gyn visit I discussed a treatment plan for previously diagnosed fibroids and my doc took a biopsy to "make sure nothing else is going on". Unfortunately, the biopsy showed complex endometrial hyperplasia with atypia (pre-cancerous condition). We discussed treatment options and she suggested a hysterectomy as I am 45 and not planning on having children. I opted for a second opinion with a gyn oncologist in Boston and am very happy that I did.

I had a TAH/BSO on 11/24 with no visible cancer seen at surgery however my final pathology report came back positive for endometrial cancer.

I had no symptoms or risk factors for the pre-cancerous condition or endometrial cancer outside of the fact that I have never had children due to inability to become pregnant. So to cut a long story short- we may not always show signs or symptoms and can be harboring silent disease.
My best advise is if there are any concerns your mass may be cancerous please get a second opinion with a doctor who spends his/her day treating cancer- they have a better understanding of the disease state and will customize your treatment to what is best for you.

Wishing you the best of luck,
Unread 12-16-2009, 10:13 AM
Re: I didn't any symptons - anyone else?

Originally Posted by EnglishIvy View Post

Has anyone else gotten the recommendation of TAH/BSO due to a mass being found on the ovary but have had no symtoms?
Yes. I felt the mass myself and went to my gyn and he ordered the ultrasound and CA 125. I had an 11cm cyst on my ovary but my CA 125 was within normal range. I have a family history of ovarian cancer but had had genetic testing done and it showed I didn't carry the gene. Still, my dr. was concerned enough that he asked a surgical oncologist to assist on my surgery. I am thrilled to say that no cancer was found.

My mom died at age 44 from this ugly cancer and if there's one thing I know, it's that by the time symptoms appear, it's usually advanced. It's not uncommon at all for women to have no symptoms, so I think your dr. is good in erring on the side of caution. What I would suggest though is asking about an oncologist participating in your surgery. It could save you from having a 2nd, more radical surgery later. The gyn oncologist I met with 2 yrs ago before the genetic testing, said that he could laprascopically remove one of both of my ovaries. That is one option that might work for you. In addition to my ovarian cyst, I also had a uterine fibroid, plus I'd had suspicous pap smears, so I opted for everything to be removed.

Whatever you decide, I wish you the best and will pray that the cyst is non-cancerous.
Unread 12-16-2009, 12:53 PM
Re: I didn't any symptons - anyone else?

Thank you for sharing your story. I am working with an ob/gyn oncologist and they will be doing a biopsy at the time of the surgery to determine if there is cancer. I have confidence in my surgeon and that she is doing the right thing. I felt like I had agreed to the procedure too quickly without doing any research. Having heard from you and other ladies I feel better about this decision. Thank you very much.

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