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Follow up checking

Posts: 2
Joined: Feb 2004

My mother age at 55 diagnoised with Endometrial Cancer Stage IIIC last year Oct, she was treated with total hysterectomy (in Oct) + 25 times external + 2 time internal (without staying in hospital) Radiotherapy. Overall treatment was completed in early Jan. She nows still feels little pain around abdominal area and head loss (approx 20 hair per day). I went to hosptial with my mother to conduct 1st follow-up consultation ask if it's okay for the pain and hair loss...I amazed no blood test or Scan test was done on her and the Dr. said it is okay and it is hard to say that...we better keep track on the condition until next consultation in May.

What would be done during follow-up checking for those who has completed the treatment? Probably you may say I'm too anxious but as I read from website my mother's stage needs special follow up. Thank you very much for your sharing and advice in advance.

pshnyc's picture
Posts: 45
Joined: Feb 2003


Has your Mom had a CT Scan since surgery? I have an abdominal/chest/pelvic scan every three months, even 3 years after my treatment for Stage 1C Ovarian Cancer. I would insist on a follow up CT scan. A CA-125 test can pick up some Ovarian cancers but it is not a definitive test. I am very surprised that you have not been clearly told what follow up would take place for your Mom. I would go back to her doctor and insist on this or find a new doctor. I would not wait until May. Good luck and let us know how it's going.

Posts: 42
Joined: Jan 2004

I hadn't heard of the CA-125 test before. Could you tell me a little about it?


Posts: 648
Joined: Mar 2003

You should get a consultation with another doctor, and I would try to go to one outside of her doctor's "circle"-maybe a different hospital. Even if the opinion is for the same (no follow up), it should at least give you some piece of mind.

I had both uterine and ovarian cancers, and have had check ups every three months by both my ob/gyn and the oncologist who did my chemo treatments, the oncologist doing the blood testing (CA 125 included), and my ob/gyn does an internal. I would guess that ovarian was not found when your mother's hysterectomy was done. They may only do a scan if it's felt that the cancer spread, if they're satisfied that the surgery removed all that was possible. The radiation is to clean up cells that might have been missed.

One thing that suprised me was that my ob/gyn did a pap test for me last year. I thought I was done with those, but she said there is still a chance (though low) of developing cancer in the vaginal area!

Posts: 7
Joined: Mar 2004

There is a blood test your mother can have done to see if there is still cancer cell activity. The blood test is called A.M.A.S. Test (Anti Malignin Antibody Serum). Ask your doctor. If he or she does not know about it, find another doctor. I had one done as I too had uterine cancer. I recently had a AMAS Test Done and all my level are now normal. Hope this helps.

Posts: 42
Joined: Jan 2004

Hi, Jacky. I'm 56 and was diagnosed with endometrial cancer last July. I had a radical hysterectomy August 19 and turned out to have myometrial and cervical cancer, too, but the myometrial didn't reach the outside of the uterus (whew!). I had radiation therapy, 25 low-dose and 3 high-dose (AKA internal), ending in mid-December. The next time I saw my oncologist, he said that it was too soon for a Pap smear - the recent radiation would throw off the results. He did an internal exam and said that I had healed well and that that everything felt fine.

Today I had another internal exam and a Pap smear. I also have the doc's order for a new CT scan. He said that the scan doesn't show really tiny tumors, and (presumably!) he had already removed everything visible. Also, of course, the radiation could have killed any lingering cancer cells. I'll be seeing him again in 3 months. I last saw my rad. onco. 5 weeks ago and have another appointment with her in June.

The only blood test I've heard of (so far) that might be done in your mother's case is one that conventional M.D.s don't order; you'd need to find someone else. It's mentioned in another reply. You could do a web search for it, if your mother was interested, to see what people have to say about it.

Six and a half months after surgery, I still have tenderness in part of my abdomen, but it's a lot better than it was. As for other lingering side effects, as my (female) radiation oncologist said, "If you don't drop your drawers in the Safeway, no one will ever know!"

Good for you, for going with your mother and asking questions. Good luck to you both.


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