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canada eh!

JoyceCanada's picture
Posts: 134
Joined: Mar 2006

Operated on January 2006 stage III rectal 2 nodes involved. Completed Folfox/radiation October 2006

I've had a 1 complete CT scan in November 2006 and 1 lung CT scan done in February 2007.

Went for my check-up with my oncologist yesterday (may 2007). Blood work taken - results not yet reported.

There was no mention of CT scan being done yesterday. An appointment was made for follow-up in August with CT scan and Colonoscopy to be done in November.

I thought that the "normal" protocal was CT every 3 months??

I'm trying to be very proactive and insisted that I get a Colonoscopy every year as my surgeon had suggested that once every 2 to 3 years would be O'k!!

Should I be pushing for a CT scan before November. --- I'm really scared the beast will return!!

I'm Canadian and have learned that I have to "fight" for every medical procedure.

I really like my oncologist, she was very aggressive and went through hoops to get me on the Folfox treatment. I was in a bit of a "fog" when I left the office yesterday and it wasn't until I got my wits to-gether that I realized that I will not be seeing her again until August.

KathiM's picture
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

Oh, Joyce...I live your life of questions, too.

I have not had a single scan since last May...and that was just a CT scan. My onc's attitude is that I have had enough radiation for a long, long time, and that should something come up, we will persue it.

As a result of a rise in my CEA (just a small one),and some other changes in bowel, etc we have sprung into action...CT scan is being approved (hopefully) as we speak by my insurance.

I get colonoscopies yearly, and that is about it.

Believe it or not, for rectal cancer, the protocols are different. Someone on this board once directed us to a site that broke it down, but believe it or not, for RECTAL cancer, there is no 'every 3 month' scan that I remember...sigh...but then I have chemo brain from the breast cancer...so I will go find out, too!

Also having an MRI for my vision problems and headaches...I feel, tho, that it is better to OVER react than UNDER...I did that and ended up with stage III rectal...lol!

Hugs, Kathi

JoyceCanada's picture
Posts: 134
Joined: Mar 2006

Hi Kathi: Thanks for the info. I got the same answer from a number of Canucks on another site. I've been away in Florida for the winter and just came back to Ontario a few days ago. In Florida I managed to put all the stress and worry out of my life. On my first visit back to the Cancer Clinic the old knots in the stomach and stress came back big time. Damn it... I'm recovering from Colon Cancer and it could come back!!! I went into a panic attack. I honestly have a wonderful Oncologist she is young, aggressive and teaches at the University, my surgeon is "world recognized Colon expert"... now here I am thinking that they don't know what is best for me. I now know they are giving me the best possible treatment and that I just have to have faith in their opinion as to what is best for me.
On hindsight I should have thought about the level of radiation that I have already received --- guess if they gave me a CT scan every 3 months I would "glow in the dark" :-)

My CEA wasn't noted before my surgery because they thought it was benign - so they havn't a base level for me. They gave me a 5 base and I'm staying pretty steady at around 2.3

Posts: 126
Joined: Jan 2006

Hi Joyce,
I was diagnosised in October 2005 (stage 3a with one node involoved) and completed FOLFOX in June 2006. I had an appointment with my oncologist yesterday. My oncologist also doesn't like to CT scans for the same reason as Kathi's. She believes that more is not better. All of my blood work is normal and I am going to TRY and not worry.
Best wishes,

Lisa Rose's picture
Lisa Rose
Posts: 595
Joined: Mar 2003

Hi Joyce,

Greetings from Eastern Canada,

I also had rectal cancer stage 3 with 10 positive lymph nodes now 5 years post surgery. The first two years I had blood work done every three months ~ also a chest x-ray and abdominal ultrasound was done once a year. My Dr's did NOT want any CT Scans done for the same reason as yourself and the others to much radiation. On my first anniversary I did demanded a CT Scan for my own piece of mind I also had a CT Scan done on my four year anniversary. In year one I also had a baseline Bone Density Scan & Mammogram done.

Trust your Dr's but always stay proactive.


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