Pet Scan Results

SophChinoy Member Posts: 4

After waiting three months post radiation and chemo, my mom's pet scan revealed no tumor.  Her oncologist said nothing lit up!  Of course you would think that we would be elated by this news!  And we would have been--but my mom's tumor has always been felt by her on her bottom.  For months she thought it was a hemorrhoid.  It wasn't until she went to a surgeon that they did a biopsy that revealed it was squamous cell cancer and then under went the standard protocal for anal cancer (chemo and radiation).  That ended in mid-September.  She asked the doctor why she can still feel this lump on her bottom??  The doctor tells her that is a hemorrhoid and it is different from what she had before.  My mom is very confused, I certainly am very confused too.  My question to all of you out there is, if this hemorrhoid is actually a tumor and because it is more EXTERNAL vs. INTERNAL would it still light up on a pet scan?  One other thing to note is that a GI doctor performed a colonoscopy a couple of months ago and calls this a lesion--a 1 cm firm lesion.  But the colorectal surgeon thinks it is a hemorrhoid and not a tumor.  She said that it doesn't light up on the pet scan.  She recommends doing a hemorrhoidectomy and sending it off to the lab to confirm the results.  Has anyone had a similar experience?  Should we let the colorectal surgeon perform the hemorrhoidectomy?  I'm so very confused here.  I appreciate your feedback.



  • RoseC
    RoseC Member Posts: 559
    Hi Sophie

    Congratulations to your mom for the all-clear diagnosis!

    After I finished treatment I developed an external growth. I had the colo-rectal surgeon examine it and she said it was a thrombosed hemorrhoid and would go away on its own. After a month or so, it did go away. Not sure what happened to it, but it went away. It wasn't cancer. Hope this helps.

  • mp327
    mp327 Member Posts: 4,440 Member

    I'm so glad your mom got good news on the PET scan--that's wonderful!  As for the remaining lesion that she can feel, most likely the only way to know for certain that it is not cancer is to have it biopsied.  I do not know if an external lesion would show up on a PET scan or not.  I would be inclined to speak in depth with the CR surgeon, along with her radiation oncologist, about removal and potential healing issues.  If your mom has healed okay from the treatment, then perhaps she will not have any issues with the hemorroidectomy.  I had 3 internal anal warts removed 2 years post-treatment and had no issues with healing.  Please keep us posted.  I wish your mom all the very best.

  • nicotianna
    nicotianna Member Posts: 209
    external hemorrhoid

    I have what is called a hemorrhoidal tag which is external.  I have had it for many years, noted after my 2nd child's birth.  It is a nuisance from a sanitary point of view.  I wonder if that is what your mom may have.  I would be very cautious about having surgery to remove it since healing after radiation is often very slow if at all complete.

    Perhaps get a second opinion from a colorectal surgeon who specializes in anal cancer.


  • Ouch_Ouch_Ouch
    Ouch_Ouch_Ouch Member Posts: 508 Member
    Hooray for your Mama!

    Congratulations to your Mama!!! What a relief for her. Good job.

    Regarding the lumpy bit that she feels, everything out of the ordinary on our skin is called a lesion, so that's not automatically a worrisome thing (a scratch, a mole, an ulcer are all lesions). In my case, I've had anal fissures since my tissues became burned from radiation. People frequently develop what's called a sentinal tag located at the out end of the lesion (fissure). My worst fissure had a swollen, slightly sore, skin pucker associated with it, but as the fissure healed, the swollen lumpy pucker diminished, too. After about 5 months, it was gone without the need for a scalpel.

    However, if this is a worrisome thing to both your Mama and her doctor, by all means at least biopsy it. But as mp237 noted, sometimes, irradiated tissues can have healing problems, so a biopsy may be the 1st step to persue over uprooting it unneccesarily. Then, if it's malignant, Mama and her doctor can develop a plan to deal with it.