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To keep ovaries or not?

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Old 02-25-2006, 06:52 AM   #1
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Backinthesaddle HB User
To keep ovaries or not?

I am very confused and need some input. I have a pre-cervical cancer that is going to require a hysterectomy. My OB told me yesterday that I may also want to have my ovaries removed to make sure it doesn't reoccur there. I have seen two gyn/oncl who did not suggest ovary removal. I am 42 and by no means want to go into early menopause if I do not have to. I was hoping some of you women have gone through both and can guide me with your personal experience.

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Old 02-25-2006, 11:38 AM   #2
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SRMom HB User
Re: To keep ovaries or not?

Hi Backinthesaddle:

I had my ovaries removed along with everything else (TAH-BSO) a little over 4 weeks ago. I am 46. The reason I had my ovaries removed (the way I understand it) was because the estrogen the ovaries produce was causing the endometriosis to continue to grow. By removing the estrogen source, presumably, the endometriosis will go away.

In your case, if there is a chance that keeping your ovaries could cause the cancer to progress, I would seriously consider removing them. You may not be mentally ready for menopause at 42, but the alternative of battling cancer would make the decision easy. If you have your uterus removed, there is also a chance your ovaries would become non-functional anyway. In my opinion, if you are pre-cancerous, I'd have them take everything out. Talk over the risks vs. benefits of keeping your ovaries with all your doctors (especially your gynecologist) and do as much independent research as you can so you can make and informed decision.

For me, so far, menopause is not bothering me. I have some night sweats that don't bother me at all, but that is the only thing I've noticed. I'm sure others who have had their ovaries removed will be able to tell you their experiences. What are your specific concerns about having your ovaries removed (i.e. bone loss, heart disease, etc.)? If you can address all your concerns and know there are safe alternative medications/supplements to help you, maybe you'd feel better about losing your ovaries.

Good luck with your decision. Keep us posted

Last edited by SRMom; 02-25-2006 at 11:38 AM.

Old 03-01-2006, 11:09 AM   #3
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ktee_uk HB User
Re: To keep ovaries or not?

Hello backin

sorry to hear that you are going through all this. I would ask your gyno for more info regarding removing your ovaries. Also if you have seen an oncologist, are they anticipating giving you some kind of chemo or radiotherapy. If so, then this may put you into menopause anyway and it would maybe be wise to remove them to reduce the risk of ovarian cancer. If you do leave your ovaries in, then you would need to ask them what kind of checks they can do and at what intervals to ensure you catch anything early.

Hope this helps.

Old 03-01-2006, 06:46 PM   #4
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dazedandconfused1 HB User
Re: To keep ovaries or not?

backinthesaddle in 2000 i had a hysterectomy for pre cancer they took everthing except one ovary 4 years later i had to go through the same proceder they couldnt go through my belly button .the second time was worse for me i got a cyst in that ovary that was also pre cancer .i wish they would have taken both ovarys the first time ive never had to take anything for my menopause just had some night sweats some thats it

Old 03-14-2006, 08:40 AM   #5
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MichelleFL HB User
Smile Re: To keep ovaries or not?

Hello! I had a total hysterectomy 4 years ago. The reason why I need it was I had pre-cancerous cells in my uterus. So really no need to take my ovaries. But I also have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, (cysts inside the ovaries). And I told my Dr. I wanted them out. Well he fought with me and said because I am so young, (at the time I was 36), he would not do it and I had to see a cancer specialist. So a few days before my surgery he did this to me and I put alot of time and effort into researching if I should indeed keep them or not. What I found out is that alot of times when they leave them in there that the ovaries stop functioning and do not come back to working again anyhow. And as the other person said that she had to go back in and have the other one taken out. So that is what made my decision. I had cysts in them and they most likely already stopped functioning when the cancer specialist and I went over it. To this day I have peace of mind that they are out and will not develop cancer or die off and have to be taken out with another surgery. I had everything out abdominally and really would not want to go through it again just for ovaries.

Each person has to make there own decision and I hope that you will research it on the internet.. The pro's and the con's. I am on no hormones and other than hot flashes, which I take a vitamin called Black Cohosh for, I am perfectly fine.

Good luck with your decision!


Old 04-07-2006, 11:26 AM   #6
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Texas
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jeth HB User
Re: To keep ovaries or not?

Backinthesaddle, I don`t think you should let go of those ovaries unless they are malignant.
I had a TAH for fibroids and being precancerous.
I kept both ovaries although the doctor wanted to take them out.
Taking the ovaries out will cause surgical menopause and your health may be affected adversely later on.
Ovarian cancer is rare and if you have a hysterectomy then the odds of getting it are even less.
All the best.

Old 04-07-2006, 01:58 PM   #7
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maggiemayuk HB User
Re: To keep ovaries or not?

Hi backinthesaddle
I had a total hyst plus ovaries 9 weeks ago and I am only 39 I have been lucky so far and have had no symptoms of the menopause at all so it affects us all in different ways. You will have to take HRT for osteoporosis reasons later in life but that is a small price to pay for peace of mind.
Good luck in the op.

Old 05-21-2006, 09:58 PM   #8
Join Date: May 2006
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lynda35 HB User
Re: To keep ovaries or not?

hi my names lynda, i am 35 years old ever since i was about 16 years old i had very very heavy periods i had to waer nappies it was so bad i had loads of tests which they found i had a lot of little cysts on both overies and was told i could not have children i was deverstated i was only 16 at the time but i went on to have a little boy so i was so happy when i was pregnant with my 2 child i was about 8 weeks pregnant and i had a very bad pain in my stomach so they had to operate which they found i had a very large cyst on my overary which had burst 3 days after the operation i miscarried i was deverstated a few months down the line they decided i needed my womb and cervix removerd i was only 29 at the time i asked them to remove my overies aswell because of my cysts and the doctor told me i was too your to have them removed so i didnt arque with him i just had my womb and cervix removerd i made a full recovery untill the pains started again so 11 months after they had removed my womb and cervix i was back in hospital having my overies removed i am now on hrt i have been on it for 5 years with no side affects at all good luck in what you decide to do

Old 05-22-2006, 12:13 PM   #9
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lane413 HB User
Re: To keep ovaries or not?

At the age of 39 yrs ol, my mom had a partial hysterotmy (sp) bcuz she had tumors. She had many test done, they gyno wanted to remove both ovaries, but she let them remove only one. That was 16 yrs ago, today she is 53 and is having some problems with her thyroid and diabetes. Im not sure if having a hysterotmy can cause any othis but she did have early menopause.

I read an article in my my mom's woman world magazine that said "if possible do not have your ovaries removed." I don't remeber why.

Like all the rest, I agree if you are afraid both may be cancerous then have them rmoved.

ps my mom is here with me giving her opinion. i am a male, I don't have ovaries, but mom insist on posting

Last edited by lane413; 05-22-2006 at 12:15 PM. Reason: add a comment

Old 05-26-2006, 03:30 PM   #10
Toot Toot
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Toot Toot HB User
Re: To keep ovaries or not?

Hi, Backinthe...

I had a total hysterectomy at 28; I'm 38 now. Prior to the removal of everything, I was in such constant pain that entering "early menopause" was just a different challenge to face. For me, it hasn't been bad at all! My battle was primarily psychological, as I'd never had children. Physically, I found a new lease on life! It doesn't sound like pain is really part of your equation but rather a question of having to face more "stuff" later. If I had to give an opinion one way or another, based on my experience, I'd say "do it!" Have it all taken, and get on with life! You need to really consider what parts of this decision you can live with, though. I wish you well!

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Old 07-20-2006, 03:00 PM   #11
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Walnut Creek CA USA
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LiLiSwen HB User
Re: To keep ovaries or not?

I was diagnosed with cervical cancer on June 15 and had a radical hysterectomy on July 10. At first I wasn't sure if I should have the ovaries removed, but after talking with my oncologist about the pros and cons and also asking her what would she do if she were in my shoes, I made the decision to have them removed. She put me on HRT the same day of my surgery. So far I have not had any hot flashes or night sweats. I am 39 and decided that I would rather get menopause over with than have to worry about ovarian cancer. (I tend to worry alot) Good luck with your decision.

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