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Spotting last week and tomorrow's 6 month follow up

April
Posts: 34
Joined: Jul 2012

Last week I had definite spotting after a 4 month break from any spotting. When I called the onc surgeon to report it, i was told it was probably because I started exercising. Why didnt they tell me that many months the road i could bleed for a reason unrelated to a recurrence of cancer? The staff seemed so indifferent.

If the surgeon doesn't see anything at tomorrow's 6 month follow up, should I ask for some other test?

I'll also get the results of a CT scan with contrast tomorrow. This was ordered to humor me. Maybe it won't show anything either, but there must be a reason for the spotting. I continue to have pain on my right side and, at times, the left side. The pain on the right side goes down my upper leg. A prior CT done in the ER shortly after surgery showed an unexplained place on my right side. The ER doctor told me to follow up with the onc surgeon who was out of the country for the month. The ER doctor thought it might be a residual ovary. I saw the nurse practitioner who thought it was probable some surgical drainage that would resolve in time.

Can you think of any questions I should ask? Thanks a bunch,

April

norma2's picture
norma2
Posts: 486
Joined: Aug 2009

Make a list and write it down. I find when I get into the appointment and the doctor walks in I am at a loss. Keep it down to a few important issues. If you don't get answers keep asking the questions.

1) What is your Staging and Grade of cancer?
2) Keep the questions as specific as you can. Vague questions get vague answers.
3) Jot down any words that you do not understand and ask for their definition. Ask them to spell them.
4) Be persistent. It is your health and you have the right to understand what is going on.
You are always entitled to a second opinion. Don't hesitate to get one if you don't think this team is taking good care of you.
Let us know how you are doing.

jazzy1's picture
jazzy1
Posts: 1387
Joined: Mar 2010

Sorry you're going thru this, but can tell you any spotting must be looked into very seriously. This is how my cancer was diagnosed and can tell you I had a number of tests and procedures before finding that it was cancer.

What I can relay to you, we're in charge of our bodies and know them better then any doc or lay person. If you feel something isn't right, go to bat and keep asking and going down the line until you have the right answer. Many docs I've found push us off and tell us what we want to hear...make it sound like nothing. Keep pushing until you have your answer.

I've read the book written by the actress Fran Dresser. She was having all kinds of pain and menstral issues for almost 2 years. Had gone to most every doc who would never truly find out what was going on...simply put her on another pill, etc. Took a long time before someone finally got to the root of the situation and she was diagnosed with uterin cancer. Even with all her money, still wasn't an easy trip, but she never gave up until the right answer was heard.

Norma has given you some great questions to ask as well. Take notes or bring someone with you to the appts...we tend to not hear much of what docs tell us.

Good luck!
Jan

April
Posts: 34
Joined: Jul 2012

Thanks for the detailed feedback. I'm really glad I found this site.

I had the 6 month follow up yesterday. The CT scan came back clear and, despite passing a blood clot the night before with red blood, she said everything looked great. She attributed the bleeding and the abdominal pain to a bladder issue and referred me to one of the doctors in her group. The thing is, I've had the abdominal pain ever since the surgery. The blood has been minimal, and the clot was about the size of a pea. Maybe this is too much information. It feels just like menstrual cramps, predominantly on my right side.

Instead of going to her associate, I'm going to a urologist that one of my friends goes to. It might be better to have someone not affiliated with the surgical oncologist to take a fresh look at things.

Have any of you been through something similar? Thanks again.

April

janh_in_ontario
Posts: 110
Joined: Sep 2010

Hi April

I have had bleeding since about 6 months after my Oct 2011 hysterectomy. I have had ultrasounds and a cyscopopy (I am sure that is not spelled right) and the oncologist tells me everything is perfect inside. I did have the cramps to go with the bleeding and I even insisted on an outside source doing the ultrasound to ensure there were no ovaries or parts of ovaries inside. I have been walking and the pain seems to have minimized.
I have a very large surgical hernia which bothers me at times - but my Dr suggests I leave it unless it really gets to be a problem. I am very overweight and the thought of surgery is not pleasant for me or them!
I definitely think sometimes you have to step outside of where you are normally seen and esp where you had the surgery -- just to be sure. I always think a doctor "in the group" is not going to identify and wrong doing by any of their own.
Good luck - stay positive and enjoy every single day.
Jan

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