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What are some general questions I should be asking my oncologist about my CT-scan results?

foods55's picture
foods55
Posts: 37
Joined: Jul 2011

I'm new
I was diagnosed with Stage 111A Endometriod Adenocarcinonoma. On February 4th I had a total
hysterectomy. I just finished my 6th rounds of chemo with taxol and carbo. I received Neulasta 24 hrs after each treatment. I had a lot of difficulty getting my 6th round of chemo because my white blood count was low. I finally finished chemo on 7/23/11. My CT-Scan is scheduled for August 5th and I see my oncologist for my results on August 11th. I want to be as prepared as possible with questions to ask my oncologist but I don't know where to begin..
I don't understand how to read a CT-Scan or what is CA 125 means?
Also,I will be starting radiation on 8/15/11 for 5 wks-5 times a week and then brachy the last week in September. I have been having a hard time with my chemo brain- I'm in the Fog all the time!
I need some help on what to expect during radiation and what to look out for.
Also, my other question is when you are having radiation do you need to get weekly blood work done or is it usually just done before your first radiation treatment?
I appreciate any help I can get.
Thanks!

Bluebird Bush
Posts: 28
Joined: May 2011

Hi, I just read your post and although I don't have answers for your questions they all sound like excellent questions that I would have asked for myself if I had been bold enough to ask. I was diagnosed in February with endometrial biopsy, then had surgery on 5/11/2011 at which time the surgeon removed uterus, tubes, overies, cervix and lymph nodes. Because of ca in two nodes it has been called stage IIIc. I had port placement on 7/8/2011 and had first chemo (carboplatin and paclitaxel) on 7/11/2011, second chemo on 7/18/2011 and then when I went for third chemo on 7/25/2011 it was decided I could not have it because the blood counts were too low. So, I skipped the 25th, will skip August 1st, then plan for next chemo on 8/8/2011. Initially it was recommended I have radiation to begin with followed by chemo, but because I was pretty adament that I did not want radiation we decided on chemo 3 x a week then a week off for six months. Since you asked such excellent questions that I would like answers to, I am going to watch to see what the Ladies tell you. I wish you the very, very best of success, and I wish you strength and courage. Geni

foods55's picture
foods55
Posts: 37
Joined: Jul 2011

Hello Geni,
Thanks for your response and I feel better already knowing others like you have similar questions. I will be waiting anxiously to see what the Ladies have to say and what helped them. I also wish you the very best during your treatments and to keep the faith!
* I was trying to add you to my friends list but I don't know if I did it right?
Sue

JoAnnDK
Posts: 275
Joined: Jun 2011

I did not have weekly blood work during radiation. I also had 5 weeks of daily pelvic radiation followed by brachytherapy.

Just as with chemo, I had every side effect "available" with radiation. Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, burns on my stomach, generally feeling pretty awful and exhaustion beyond belief. I had to seriously restrict my diet. I was, however, able to take myself to the treatments.

The one worst thing, humiliating and uncomfortable, was the prep/setup (not what it is called but I cannot remember the term used) for the brachytherapy. I had been forewarned but it was still awful.

Best wishes.....

susafina
Posts: 134
Joined: May 2010

Hi Sue,
From one Sue to another welcome to our site. You will find a lot of good information here and a lot of caring people. I too was diagnosed with Stage III C adenocarcinoma. I had chemo and radiation as well. First of all I found that writing down all of my questions that I wanted to ask my docs is the best way to gather the information. I keep a note book of all my appointments and my questions and answers.
Remember treatments affects us all in different ways. Radiation I found to be very tiring. Just having to go everyday for 28 treatments is tiring. Fatigue is a side effect especially since you recieved chemo already that is tough. One thing you must do is keep the area being irradiated free from harsh soaps or powder. I am sure you will recieve this information from your radiologist. Yuo need to apply a gentle moisturizer on your abdomen twice a day. This helps prevent redness or burns. But you can only use either eucerin cream or aquaphor or I found Aveno cream soothing. You apply it right after a treatment and then again at night. Do not put it on before treatment. This really helps.
Eating can also be a little difficult. Radiation can give you diarrhea. So avoid spicy foods and foods high in fiber. I avoided fresh salads but ate steamed vegetables. Immodium really helped as well. Most ofthe effects occurresd as radiation progressed. But I still felt crummy for a few weeks after.
Nausea can also occur but anti-emedics do help. Try to keep yourself hydrated.
Most of all rest and know that you will get through this. We are all here for you. I apologize because this is a lot of information and I left out a lot but I hope this helps.
SUE

foods55's picture
foods55
Posts: 37
Joined: Jul 2011

Hello JoAnnDK and Susafina,
Thanks so much for the information that you both gave me about radiation treatments. It's still so hard to believe that I already finished chemo and I'm starting radiation real soon. All of you ladies are such a delight and so gracious and willing to help others! I brag to my mother, sister, friends, and doctors for all the love and support that everyone gives here.
I try to go on this site every few days to find out more about cancer. I'm educating myself to be an active member and asking lots of questions in all decisions that will come a long my way.
Best to all,
Sue

Songflower's picture
Songflower
Posts: 631
Joined: Apr 2009

Hi,

It's good to have questions ready. Always get a copy of your CT scan. Some women go ahead of their appts to medical records and get a copy and read through it. The Doctor can also give you a copy during your visit. This is not hard with all of the computer generated copies; don't be shy about going to medical records. I never got a disc but some women do; I just like a copy I can read. Mark your questions then. Your Doctor should go over it with you and if he/she doesn't then ask them to do it. You have a right to your medical records.

Keep trucking, you're doing a great job.

Diane

foods55's picture
foods55
Posts: 37
Joined: Jul 2011

Hi Diane,
Thanks for the reminder to get a copy of my CT scan. I will be calling the office ahead of time to make sure I get a copy so it's ready for my next appointment.

I went to Borders today to see if they had any good books on uterine cancer. I didn't really
find anything yet. I was wondering if you or the ladies could recommend some good books that really helped you out.

Thanks,
Sue

foods55's picture
foods55
Posts: 37
Joined: Jul 2011

Hi Diane,
Thanks for the reminder to get a copy of my CT scan. I will be calling the office ahead of time to make sure I get a copy so it's ready for my next appointment.

I went to Borders today to see if they had any good books on uterine cancer. I didn't really
find anything yet. I was wondering if you or the ladies could recommend some good books that really helped you out.

Thanks,
Sue

Songflower's picture
Songflower
Posts: 631
Joined: Apr 2009

I don't know any good books on it; Linda or Claudia might. We have serous uterine and there is not alot out there on this cancer. Sorry, I've been pasting info together and I think on serous that's what most of us do. Endometroid is less agressive and I do believe there are some books out on that.

Keep going girl!
Diane

foods55's picture
foods55
Posts: 37
Joined: Jul 2011

Hello Diane,
Thanks for getting back with me and I'll check other book stores and see if Linda or Claudia have any suggestions. Also, I forgot to ask you if you seen any videos about cancer/nutrition. My sister was talking to a nurse that grows all her own
vegetables and is really into nutrition. My sister couldn't remember the
exact title but it was something like The beautiful? nutrition and cancer.
Have you heard of this video or any other good videos about nutrition?
If you can get back with me I would appreciate it.
Thanks,
Sue

Songflower's picture
Songflower
Posts: 631
Joined: Apr 2009

I am not a big nut with supplements; I've always eaten a fairly healthy diet. My favorite book is the Anti Cancer Diet Book by Dr. Serven Shreiber. He recently passed away; he had a brain tumor that was very agressive and he lived twenty years. He believed in diet and chemo treatments. He is a physician and really covers alot about life style change.

Keep fighting!
Diane

JoAnnDK
Posts: 275
Joined: Jun 2011

My gyn onc wrote a book about uterine cancer. It is very basic but I was glad to have it for myself and my family at the beginning of my "journey". Title: Johns Hopkins Patients' Guide to Uterine Cancer

http://www.amazon.com/Hopkins-Patients-Uterine-Cancer-Medicine/dp/076377460X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1313110889&sr=1-1

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