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Newbie BC survivor but now possible endo/uterine cancer??

Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2011

Hi everyone,

I am 42 years old and a 2 year breast cancer survivor - yeah!! I also have had endometriosis since I was 14 (5 lap procedures before I was 30) and I was on the pill for 23 years. I chose not to do tamoxifen for this reason - increase in uterine cancer so I'm not on anything.

Last week my pap smear came back with normal cervical cells but there were some extra cells from my uterine lining that also appeared and because I'm over 40 (and I guess also my BC) the pathologist recommended a biopsy to rule out anything.

I was scheduled to have my biopsy yesterday but after my doctor did the vaginal ultrasound and saw that I had ovulated - my left ovary was HUGE (3.3 cm x 3.4 cm) and we NEVER see it - even during my IVF treatments so he was concerned and ordered blood work to check progesterone levels. He said that if my progesterone levels are up then he didn't want to do the biopsy because it may cause false results or not accurately get what he was looking for so now I have to wait 2 weeks. By the way my hormone levels were high - 9.3 so clearly I had ovulated.

I have no irregular bleeding and my periods are pretty normal but the first day or two I bleed very heavy (clots and all). I don't have a discharge but I am always "wet" down there like I'm ovulating but nothing when I go to the bathroom.

Has anyone else had a pap smear be an early indication of endo or uterine cancer after biopsies confirmed? Would my having breast cancer be a cause or link if it is something? Could my endometriosis be involved?

I guess I'm "anxious" because they said the same thing about the biopsy from my breast cancer - "chances are there's nothing to worry about" - well, guess what - yep. Early and fast growing cells. I really don't want to have to deal with CANCER again but will go to battle if necessary.

Thanks for any advice/suggestions/help you can give me - I really appreciate it. I can't tell you how much boards like this are critical in times like this - the BC board was my bible and the support I got made my decisions easier!

Blessings to you all!!


Kaleena's picture
Posts: 1797
Joined: Nov 2009

Hello Kim:

First of all, congrats on your two year mark! I don't really have much to tell you, except that I had endometriosis. When I was 45, I started to have some problems that I thought were bowel related. Went the whole routine, ended up with a colonoscopy which was negative. Nothing else unusual, although when I ate I had a full feeling before I could finish my meal. I started to have pain and went to gyne who indicated it was my endometriosis. They did a laparascopy and it was determined that my scarring was severe so they ordered a total hysterectomy. I had asked for a scan, but they indicated there would be no need for it. They didn't suspect cancer or anything like that. (I always had normal paps). So at age 45 I had my hysterectomy. After the pathology report came back, it was determined that I had endometrial adenocarcinoma.

So I guess my suggestion for you is to ask for a PET scan. CT Scans will show scarring, etc. but a PET scan will show any active cancers. You may have to fight your insurance company though because they don't like to generally grant those unless it is medically necessary.

My best to you, Kim.


Double Whammy's picture
Double Whammy
Posts: 2809
Joined: Jun 2010

(Has anyone else had a pap smear be an early indication of endo or uterine cancer after biopsies confirmed? Would my having breast cancer be a cause or link if it is something? Could my endometriosis be involved?)

1. That would be me, but isn't necessarily you. I had endometrial cells on my Pap smear and no other symptoms. It was actually fortuitous for me because I did have endometrial cancer, and it was early stage, low grade because it was caught so early. I am postmenopausal (64).

2. I had both breast cancer and endometrial cancer at the same time last year, so believe me, I asked everyone with an MD why, how, and especially why me? I was told that it is not unusual for a woman to have both breast and endometrial cancers over the course of her lifetime because the risk factors are the same, not that one "causes" another. Just the same environment for both of the nasty cells to sprout and grow, particularly estrogen receptor positive cancers and both of mine were. Since I hang out on both this and the breast cancer board, I've paid really close attention and there are a lot of women who have had both - and not necessarily related to Tamoxifen.

3. I don't know. I did not have endometriosis ever.

Hope you get your biopsy soon and it does turn out that they were just being cautious, as they should be. Ask your gyn about taking 800 mg. Ibuprofen prior to your biopsy. For me, it made a huge difference (I had some previously without Ibuprofen). Please let us know what your outcome is.

Best, Suzanne

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