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Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

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Unread 08-18-2010, 10:12 AM
Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

Good morning, sisters! I had a TAH+BSO on July 30. Went for my follow-up one week after returning home, and it seems that all is well, thank God. My adenocarcinoma was confined to an endometrial polyp, and all other organs were fine. Am scheduled to return to the gyn four weeks from my initial follow-up visit.

Here is my question and dilemma: The gyn, whom I never met until an ultrasound recently showed mild thickening of my uterine lining, says that I should be checked once a year after my next follow-up visit. This sounds pretty lax to me. My sister works with a gyn oncologist at a Women's Hospital back East, and I have been corresponding with that doc via email. The gyn oncologist said that their follow-up for women with endometrial cancer is as follows: exam and pap smear every 3 months for the first year, exam and pap smear every 4 months for the second year, exam and pap smear every 6 months after that until five years from the date of surgery.

Yikes! What a difference between these two recommendations! Question #1: Can the sisters please help shed some light on what the standard of care is for a case like mine based on your experience and what you know? I am also concerned as to whether insurance would cover the frequent follow-up visits suggested by the doc above.

One more thing - though a well-regarded gyn oncologist assisted with my surgery, I have never met him. (It seems I went to sleep from the "happy juice" before the docs arrived in the OR.) The doc from back East suggested that I stay in touch with the gyn oncologist who assisted with my surgery. I would like to make an appt. with him, but am concerned about insurance covering the visit. My medical bills are huge. Question #2: Any thoughts?

Thanks so much,

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Unread 08-18-2010, 05:04 PM
Re: Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

I had a da Vinci assisted hysterectomy on July 26. I also had endormetrial cancer located only in a polyp. My follow up is every 3 months for the first year, every 4 months for the second year and every 6 months until the 5 year anniversary. My insurance will cover all of this.

Maybe you could call your insurance company about covering treatments to the other doctor. My gyn referred me to an onc/gyn after my D&C showed endometrial cancer and the onc/gyn is doing the follow up.

Unread 08-18-2010, 06:14 PM
Re: Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

Thanks so much, Fran. This info is very helpful, and I will definitely contact my insurance company.

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Unread 08-18-2010, 08:10 PM
Re: Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

sheshe8 -

I would call your insurance company and call the gyn-onc that assisted with the surgery.

I am being seen by a gyn-onc and my follow-up is what you listed for the women's hospital.

This is your body and in this case you need to be your own advocate.

Unread 08-18-2010, 08:35 PM
Re: Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

Thanks, G.! It looks like it is unanimous so far for the follow-up schedule used at the Women's Hospital.

Unread 08-19-2010, 01:04 PM
Re: Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

Count me in there too. every 3 months the first 2 yrs, 2x a year for 2 yrs and then annually. My dr. does full body node check, pap smear, internal exam, rectal exam and asks me a million questions. I don't have scans or anything .
Unread 08-19-2010, 04:24 PM
Re: Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

Thanks for this. I am gathering my courage to speak to my gyn about my follow-up care. I am generally not a wimp, but he tends to be kind of dismissive about my questions and observations, so I am not looking forward to the conversation. However, I guess that is all the more reason to consult with the gyn-onc and stick up for myself.
Unread 08-19-2010, 04:35 PM
Re: Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

sheshe -

Let him / her be dismissive.

It's your body and they don't have to live with the consequences. At least that is my view of things.

Unread 08-19-2010, 05:04 PM
Re: Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

Thanks, G.! I thought you'd say something like that! My courage is growing! I am a libralady, so sometimes it's hard for me to make waves.
Unread 08-19-2010, 08:48 PM
Re: Endometrial cancer - follow-up standard of care

Hellow, fellow Libran. I had cancer in two polyps. My gyn onc takes care of all my female issues now. I started out with exams every three months for the first year. I had a little silver nitrate at the three month exam for a spot that wasn't healing, but otherwise everything was uneventful.

Because my gyn onc said there was a 1% chance of recurrence due to the cancer being caught so early, he then told me that instead of moving to a six month schedule, I did not have to come back for a year. At the next appointment, he found and removed a polyp which was benign so now I am going back in 6 months.

At each exam, he checks my breasts, gives me a rectal exam, does a pap and a pelvic exam and always asks if I am up to date with my mammogram. No other tests for me so far.

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