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Vaginal dilator

Posts: 50
Joined: Feb 2010

I have read about the vaginal dilator from several of the posts on this site but no one at the radiation place has told me about it. Should I ask there or maybe my OB/GYN?

mp327's picture
Posts: 4168
Joined: Jan 2010

Your rad onc should be able to answer any questions you have about it and probably also can give you one--that's who gave me my first one. If that doesn't work out, then I would ask your OB/GYN.

How are you doing?

Posts: 50
Joined: Feb 2010

Thanks for your reply. I will ask my rad onc. So far I'm doing good have had 2 radiation treatments so only 13 hopefully to go.Originally I was told to expect any side effects after the 3rd week but I'm wondering if with the 2 week break maybe I won't feel too much side effects! or maybe that's wishful thinking! I got very constipated the first two weeks so am hoping to avoid that this time by eating plenty of fruits and salads and drinking a lot of water? Any advice on this subject would be appreciated.

sephie's picture
Posts: 649
Joined: Apr 2009

take Miralax which is at every pharmacy over the counter. i also used a stool softener called Colace -- also over the counter. be sure to get a dilator even if they have never heard of the vagina closing up because it does close. sephie

Posts: 1269
Joined: Oct 2011

Stenosis(shrinking or closing) in the vaginal area is very common after pelvic radiation. For some reason many rad docs don't seem to bring it up when discussing possible side effects nor do they bring it up at follow-ups. My new onc gyn works closely with women receiving radiation for cervical cancer and said it is common practice to pack the vagina with moist gauze during radiation to help prevent this, he admitted it is not as common when treating anal cancer and was not sure as to why??? I wish I had known him earlier he would have had me suggest this. Anyhow, I have a great deal of stenosis and he had to use a pediatric instrument in order to examine me...I am now starting with the smallest dilator. (I am a little over a year post treatment) and sure wish I knew earlier what I know now! I am not even concerned at this point about fixing this for sexual reasons but he was not able to easily do a complete pap test on me and that has me worried. My cervical cancer swab did come back clear tho...so happy about that! If they don't bring it up, don't be shy, we need to make preventing and fixing this problem common practice if at all possible!

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