Hi, I'm 54 yers old and was diagnosed with cervical and vaginal cancer in March. This was a total shock, as i visit my gyn yearly. I have had irregular paps, but the biopsy always came back negative. In June of 07 I also had a sonagram and transvaginal sonagram and everything came back normal. I have completed 8 wks of radiation and chemotheraphy, and it appears 80% of the cancer has disappeared. However, I still have a 2cm tumor located behind the pubic bone. It appears the only way to get rid of it is with a anterior pelvic exenteration. Has anyone here been faced with this? Did you have any other options? Any reponses woiuld be greatly appreciated as I am beside myself.
Franny, I was diagnosed with cervical cancer in April, but am not familiar with vaginal cancer (except what I've read in the last 2 months). I'm sure someone will be along soon who can give you some more information than I can.
Are you seeing a gyneoclogical oncologist? If not, I HIGHLY recommend you get one.
Best of wishes go out to you. I am not familiar with cancer personally. I started having abnormal paps in June of 07 so I'm on the 6 month "watch and wait" program. But, I'm interested in your story. As I understand you, there have been abnormal paps in the past. Did the Dr's explain the "abnormalities"...were they CIN I, CINII etc? Have you ever has a colposcopy and finally how often were they seeing you to follow up on the abnormalities?
In an effort to be as proactive as possible with my care, I'm always curious to learn more when I hear stories where women were seen as suggested by the Dr then they are suddenly faced with this.
Again, my very best to you. I hope you find as much support on this board as the rest of us do. Take care.
Pickle Eyes Yes I was diagnosed by a gynecologic oncologist. After my treatment period ended he suggested that I see another doctor at Sloan Kettering. That is where I'm at now. I am scheduled for a follow up MRI and Pet Scan.
Mommyandwifey I had irregular paps for 4 yrs. I did have a colposcopy and several biopsies done in the office. Results always came back all right. I was always so glad that I didn't persue it or take charge. I feel that I somehow slipped through the cracks. You are absolutely correct in taking charge. After my diagnosis, I encouraged my sister who is 52, and has also had irregular paps, to see her gyn and explain my situation. As a precaution, she is scheduled for a hysterectomy in a month. Thank you for your well wishes.
Good suggestion for your sister. Also, like you I would have trusted the Dr. too if I was told everything was fine. Wow...just an unfortunate situation. One thing I have learned on this board and you might want to recommend to your sister is to ask for a copy of the pathology report from any colposcopy/ biopsy so that she can read it herself. Also, with a colposcopy make sure she asks for an ECC (endocervical curretage) which is a sample of the inside of the cervix further up the canal. Finally, if she hasn't already she will probably want to know her HPV status. This is in no way to suggest you don't trust your Dr. but we are really our best advocate. Dr's see hundreds of patients and many cases of abnormal PAPs that they may sometimes become a bit complacent or laid back since "most cases" turn out ok. The problem is we're all individual and not "most cases".
In any case, I look forward to hearing your updates as you conquer this situation. Brighter days are definately ahead!!