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question about ovarian and breast cancer question about ovarian and breast cancer

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Unread 10-25-2001, 03:07 PM
question about ovarian and breast cancer

Hi. I am 34 and almost two weeks post-op from my tah/bso for a borderline tumor of low malignant potential. I was wondering, now that I've had ovarian cancer, does that put me at a higher risk for breast cancer? I asked my doctor, but would also like to hear from some of you. I am on hrt. I think in my case, because of my age, the benefits outweigh the risks. What do you think? Thanks for all the support.
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Unread 10-25-2001, 03:27 PM
question about ovarian and breast cancer

Hi Borderline!
I am glad to hear you are doing well from your surgery, and that further treatment is not required. Thats wonderful.

I don't have a definite answer for you, but I believe certain strains of ovarian put one more at risk for the potential for developing breast cancer than other strains. There are many different strains of this cancer from what I gather.

I too am on HRT, estrogen gel, and its been used in Europe for over 20 years, with very little breast cancer risk. I have bone density problems, so my gyn felt I needed to be on the estrogen along with Actonel, and 1500 mg. of calcium supplements daily. So in my case as well, I guess the benefits for my bones, out weigh the risk.
Best of luck with your recovery!! Keep resting!!
Unread 10-25-2001, 07:41 PM
question about ovarian and breast cancer


I'm glad to hear you're doing so well. I hope you are healing well.

I know there are alot of confusing bits of information out there. I don't have any particular answers either.

My particular type of ovarian was linked to the breast cancer my mom passed from. Both were the estrogen receptive type so at this point am unable to take any estrogen.

I'm still in the searching phase for answers and information for something to help protect my bones. I'm soon scheduled for my first bone density test so will be able to address more at that time.

I wish you the best in your search for information. In the meatime, please do keep resting well and hopefully you're healing will be swift.


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Unread 10-25-2001, 07:59 PM
question about ovarian and breast cancer

I had cancer in my ovary and I'm safe to be on HRT because it wasn't ovarian cancer. Confusing? Yeah. My cancer was a stromal cancer called fibroma-thecoma. Non-aggressive (though it was growing fast enough for me ) and not estrogen dependent.

My oncologist knew that I read (though he has NO IDEA how much I do ), so when he was telling me that I'd had ovarian cancer and I started to write it down on my piece of paper (because my brain had gone numb) he quickly grabbed my pencil and crossed out ovarian cancer and said I should look at stroma and fibroma NOT ovary. He knew that reading about ovarian cancer would give me the wrong idea of what was going on.

That's why you have to talk to your doctor. If it was low malignant it's likely to be a different cancer than "ovarian cancer" even if it appeared in your ovary and you need to find out exactly what it is before you think about HRT. In that case, your risk of breast cancer is no higher than the average.

But, as Vicki says, if it's "classic" ovarian cancer, you want to be very careful and maybe get second opinions about HRT.

Hope this helps.
Unread 10-28-2001, 07:22 AM
question about ovarian and breast cancer

The doctors undoubtably did a biopsy on your cancer and determined that it was not estrogen dependant before they started you on HRT. (Or at least they SHOULD have). I had the same surgery and diagnosis almost exactly a year ago (October 30) and had to wait for a month for HRT to start because I also had 3 other types of tumors in my girly guts, and the pathologists in the Providence health system ALL looked at the biopsy and met to discuss it before they would willingly render any decision. I was a complicated case, but they deemed that it was ok.

Low malignancy potential is kind of confusing, in that the word malignancy makes you think BAD. What I have been able to find out is that it is NOT so bad. It basically means that the cells in themnselves look like they may have malignant changes, but do not at all act like malignancies, and there is a low potential of them becoming so. I read this on John Hopkins Hospital web-site, and it was very reassuring to me at the time that I was most worried about it.

" It was Hopkins gynecologic pathologists who discovered that some small ovarian tumors are not cancerous or precursors of cancer. These tumors, known as tumors of low malignancy potential, can
be removed without aggressive treatment for cancer, which often destroys a patient’s fertility. This finding has been particularly significant for young women of childbearing age."

Hope that helps!

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