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Unread 09-03-2002, 05:44 PM
vaginal cancer, intimacy, cancer site

i have been reading the post, identifyong with many of you and praying for all of you. i wish I could contribute more, but life has gotten so busy and i barely have time to read. My 15 yr old goes to a high school that it 30 minutes away, so that is two 1 hr trips. My 17, 16, 13 year old are on internet homestudy programs and each do 4 hours on line each day. this is the first year in 6 years that i haven't homeschooled them, but my husband put them on this program while i was in the hospital in case i was too sick to homeschool. i am teaching 5th grade religious ed at my church one day a week and will help lead a highschool weekend retreat in sept 20-22. i never thought about cancer until my dx in july and when the doctorit hadn't spread to the lymph nodes i put it all behing me like a bad dream. I am 4 wks post op tomorrow , trying to jump back into life, get used to the colostomy ( glad it is temporary) but people ask me if i am scared the cancer will come back. I wasn't until they said that, but now feel like there is a monster, biding it's time, waiting to attack. The doctor said it was squamos cell vaginal cancer and the tumor was 8 cms, located part in the vagina, part in the rectum. He didn't say what stage , but the path said cells were undifferentiated, but there was no spread to lymph node. i had 1 case of genital warts at age 18, before I had become sexually active, but nothing since. could that have been HPV? The surgery I had on Aug 7 was a radical hysterectomy with removal of part of the rectum, 6 inches of the colon and part of the vagina which i think will need to be reconstructed before my husband and I can be intimate. He has been wonderfu to me so far, but I sense his impatience and he is starting to over eat, hide food for later. I have a n appointment next week and the doctor will decide if follow up radiation is necessary, when the colostomy will be reversed and and the reconstruction done. i am afraid to take my husband with me, because he asks so many ? He acts like i am a car and he wants to know when i will be drivable again ot if i am totaled! If i need radiation to the vaginal rectal area what will be the side afects.

I also want to share a very good active website for womens cancer it is www.eyeson the
Peace and prayer,
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Unread 09-03-2002, 05:55 PM
vaginal cancer, intimacy, cancer site

s Debbie

Your life is sure sounding extremely hectic right now. And you are still barely out of major surgery. Try and find some time just for you. Even if it means saying no to teaching the religious class at this time and letting someone else handle the retreat weekend. Sometime we women have trouble saying no! Seriously, you should try and lay low for awhile and allow yourself time to heal, physically and emotionally. That busy family will need you for a long time to come. Take extra good care of yourself to ensure that long future.
Sorry I can't help with the radiation question, some others will soon be along.
You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Unread 09-03-2002, 09:54 PM
vaginal cancer, intimacy, cancer site

Hi Debbie, I agree with Karenann, you need to take it very easy as you are still recovering, emotionally and physically. I know some husbands get impatient but they need to realize just what we women go through when we have a gyn. cancer . It is pretty emotionally draining.

I had pelvic radiation . There are quite a few women who have had it and each of us have had different side effects.

I didnt get tired at all , but I did have a nap each afternoon , to allow myself to 'just be' .
I didnt get diarrea but I did have painful urination and I also got very severe radiation burns in the whole of my genital area.

BUT ~ its now over a year since I finished my treatments and I can say I have no real lasting side effects other than having to use the vaginal dilator and also sometimes a quirky bladder.

If you ever want to chat about it , please email or message me . I dont mind at all. Hope all goes well for you , holding you in my and my prayers . Love, hugs and angels x x

Oh by the way ' eyes on the prize ' is a great website for gyn cancer support , particularly cervical and vaginal . I use to visit quite often.
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Unread 09-04-2002, 07:59 PM
vaginal cancer, intimacy, cancer site


Just stopping in to add my 's. And to warn you about the pillow police who stop in from time to time to warn new es (such as yourself) who are doing too much too soon! I know that sometimes it seems easier to just keep busy so you don't have to think about everything that's going on in life, but you owe it to yourself and your family to take the time to get healed. You've had such a huge procedure. We want you to heal fully.

As far as the HPV, I can tell you that HPV does cause genital warts. Now whether or not HPV was responsible for your tumor, well, only your doctor can tell you that by looking at the pathology reports.

I had part of my vaginal wall removed and some work done at the vaginal entrance. It was a long road back to intimacy with DH. It was many, many weeks before I was released to even try. It was longer still before it was comfortable for me. It was very helpful to me to have people to talk to about it, and my husband was a saint! He was so supportive and patient, and I know that that was not an easy time for him. But we made it through!

Good luck, Debbie! May you recover quickly. I'm sending er's your way.


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