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Alexandra....

Glad to be done's picture
Glad to be done
Posts: 563
Joined: Jul 2012

I see you are home from the hospital. You can't jst sneak in and respond to posts and not let us know how your surgery went...LOL.. I have been thinking about you and wondering how you are feeling.

When you feel up to it update us on how the surgery went and how you are doing....

Hope all is well and you are not having too much pain.

Eileen

Alexandra's picture
Alexandra
Posts: 1299
Joined: Jul 2012

It was not half as bad as I was expecting. My surgery was optimal and took 2 hours. They did not find any trace of the 9 cm original tumor or mets. Everything was nuked by the chemo. Bowels, lymph nodes and other organs were not affected. So they removed uterus, ovaries, fallopian tubes, omentum and stitched me up top to bottom with what looks like a 14" long zipper.
Upon waking up the first thing I did was put on full make-up.
The next day I was walking around, climbing stairs and fighting with defenseless nurses.
On day 3 they sent me home.

Today is day 6. Pain is minimal, only when I sneeze or yawn. So far I had no issues with urinary / intestinal tracts (translation: I am on no special diet but poo and pee like a champ). However I pretend to be weak and helpless, because I enjoy too much watching my hubby struggle with recycling and unload groceries all by himself.

Yesterday and today I hang out at the mall wearing high heels (I could not wear them in a long time because of neuropathy and now it's gone). Staples are coming out on Tuesday.

I will be getting my remaining 3-4 rounds of chemo via IP port. Getting it put in on Oct. 10th.

I had a talk with my ONC about putting me on HRT for the surgical menopause symptoms (I don't have them yet, but probably will) and she has no problem with it. Neither do I.

Tethys41's picture
Tethys41
Posts: 1057
Joined: Sep 2010

Are you aware of the risks associated with HRT and cancer?

Alexandra's picture
Alexandra
Posts: 1299
Joined: Jul 2012

Using HRT is a controversial and a very personal decision.
If a woman believes that replacement hormons can cause her harm and it raises her anxiety, she is probably better off without them. If an OC survivor blames her inevitable recurrance on the hormones, she should not take them.

Yes, HRT slightly elevates the risk of estrogen-dependent cancers in the general population.

In pre-menopausal ovarian cancer survivors using HRT improves quality of life and has absolutely no influence on progression-free survival or on overall survival rates. I found at least 3 research studies (2 obscure and one recent from Baltimore Johns Hopkins) that indicate just that. Links are below.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21474167
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20729501
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/(SICI)1097-0142(19990915)86:6%3C1013::AID-CNCR17%3E3.0.CO;2-1/full

Glad to be done's picture
Glad to be done
Posts: 563
Joined: Jul 2012

OMG were you seriously walking around the mall in heels already? Amazing. I faired the surgery well too. I was not stapled. She sewed inside and basicly glued me shut... I was happy about that. I had staples after my c section and it always felt like they were pulling out. My surgery was on a monday and come Wednesday mnorning at 5:30 I was bugging the nurses to go home. They finally sprung me about 2:00.

I am so happy to hear you are doing so well. I am surprised your doc did not put in the I P port while he was in there. It is a quick surgery. Mine took a little les than an hour. I have to say that surgery kicked my butt more than the hysterectomy did and that was laprocsopic. Doc said it was because it was so close to the first one.

My hot flashes started about 5 or 6 days after my surgery I think was when I had my first one. I used to get a couple a day. Now I go a few days without any and then I will have a couple in one day. So far it has not been bad.

Keep up the great recovery and remember to get some nap time in between shopping trips. lol

Alexandra's picture
Alexandra
Posts: 1299
Joined: Jul 2012

I had so many arguments with my ONC prior to surgery refusing consent to bowel resection or ileostomy, that she did not want to put the IP port in without my written consent for the risk of being sued.

My last chemo 6 weeks ago already kicked me into menopause, but I have not had hot flashes or mood swings yet. I was using over the counter Replens for vaginal dryness and it seems to be working.

kikz's picture
kikz
Posts: 1299
Joined: Jun 2010

you are doing so well, Alexandra. Good luck with the rest of your journey.

Karen

lovesanimals's picture
lovesanimals
Posts: 1325
Joined: Sep 2011

Your description of the days immediately following your surgery is too funny! I'm so glad you're doing so well and were only in the hospital for three days. I was in the hospital for nine days, partially because it took me forever to pass gas (I had a bowel resection too). Please keep us posted as you go through the rest of your chemo treatment.

Kelly

kimberly sue 63's picture
kimberly sue 63
Posts: 415
Joined: Apr 2012

You have such a positive attitude with all that you are going through. Keep it it up Positive thoughts help you stay in good health!! Kim

Alexandra's picture
Alexandra
Posts: 1299
Joined: Jul 2012

Dear Eileen, Karen, Kelly, Kim

I am very grateful for the kind words and support. It sure helps a lot.
I hope you and all other wonderful women on this board stay in good health and spirits.

As far as my positive attitude...

Not being religious, I don't have the comfort of prayer or belief in afterlife. Here and now is all there is to it for me.

After I was diagnosed I had my moments of weakness, anger and hopelessness. As plan "B" I stockpiled enough Oxicontin to take out a population of a small town, researched carbon monoxide poisoning in an idling car and visited a few tall bridges. It's the truth. I am not proud of it, it was selfish, cowardly and inconsiderate of the people who love me.

And then I decided that I will not let this desease consume my life and identity.
You have to play with the hand you've been dealt however unfair the game is. You can't control the outcome, only your perception and attitude. But it's not over until you decide it's over.

In a way I am glad that I had to face cancer. Otherwise I would have comfortably lived my whole life never questioning mortality, the value of life or understanding other people's suffering and courage. People fighting against a bunch of rapidly dividing cells. Cells are not an "evil beast", they simply follow faulty algorithms. Call it mutations, switches, whatever... Cancer does not interest me. People do.

I have no intention to offend anyone with my morbid sense of humor. If I did, English is my second language.

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