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What's Next?

Posts: 653
Joined: Oct 2012

I realize there are six-month checks and such, but is there any type of checks done fairly soon after a person finishes chemo and radiation?

Does my radiation oncologist do nothing more than probably send a report to my oncolgist? I don't see the RT group doing anything more than they did, as they did weekly x-rays throughout the process of radiation therapy. Would I only return there if I am referred there by my oncologist because of another problem? If I recall, RT can't be done to the same area, and so it would have to be for something else somewhere else, I am guessing.

I do have a CT scan the end of next month, but that is because of a very small spots seen in March (and again in August) that don't appear to be cancerous; but the oncologist wants a third scan to be sure. The spots are not in the organs AND they are too small to be picked up with any further testing, such as a PET scan. I am thinking that this CT scan is not necessarily a post-chemo/post-radiation check.

Posts: 3644
Joined: Aug 2009

And our Drs are different. I've had a head MRI and a lower body CAT (think that's all other than annual mammos) since after last rads in March '10. The head MRI was because of some pain around behind eye (nothing found and 2 weeks of Dex took care of it), the CAT was basically to see rather my Gall Bladder Sludge (yes that is a medical term and it often happens with chemo) was gone/still sludge/ or had become stones - had become stones but have had no issues with them. Oh forgot the Bone Scan because I was having more upper back pain to be sure it was just the arthritis that's been there for years getting worse - it was. It's been close to 2 yrs since any scans.

My Rad Dr was the first to kick me to the curb about 6 mths after last rad. He would have sooner IF I hadn't burned so bad that took months to heal. Next was Surgeon as long as I see my PA every 6 months. My Chemo Dr says he'll see me forever every 6 months because I'm "high risk" (IBC) and he wants to be sure I stay on Femara/letrozole forever.

There is no 'one size that fits all' - we are each unique.

Winyan - The Power Within


Posts: 134
Joined: Oct 2011

I still see my radiation doc every six mos., but I really don't know why. I see the med onc every six months and the surgeon every six mos but since mammos and blood work are part of these check ups, I can see why. I'm sure there is a reason for radiation check ups and I think I'll ask on my next visit next week. Glad you are doing well. Regards.

camul's picture
Posts: 2541
Joined: Dec 2010

then a 6 week follow-up after the second round. Mine was to my hips, spine and pelvic region due to mets, and I was able to have it to the same area 2x, but that was because we did not do the max on the first round.

There really is no reason for me to go to her unless I need more radiation, such as brain or liver.

I only saw the surgeon for the follow-up after mastectomy to make sure I was healing. During my eight years of neds, I saw my oncologist every 3 months for almost 3 years, then every 6 months, unless there was an issue, until mets.

Each doctor works differently. Mine also does ct scans to check my liver and lungs (tumors in the liver, and nodules in my lung.) The lung nodules have not changed and they were there prior to mets, but he keeps and eye on it just to be safe!

Best to you!

SIROD's picture
Posts: 2199
Joined: Jun 2010

Dear Desertgirl,

I was diagnose way back in 1994. I've seen the surgeon when there was a need, the radiation oncologist again when there was a need. I have had oncology appointment a month after the surgery and this one has been an ongoing relationship.

I have been in treatment since that time. I am ER positive and have been using hormonal therapy drugs for 17 1/2+ years. I have scans when there is a need. Lately it's been every 3 months and I hope soon it will go back to when the symptoms require it.

Wishing you the best,


Posts: 653
Joined: Oct 2012

This morning I had my final follow-up for the burns I ended up with from radiation. Things are good, and I don't have to return for that. I did get an appointment for a three-month check.

So, so far I have these:
medi-port flush - this month (every six weeks until I get my port out)
oncologist - first part of December(CT scan before appointment)
radiation oncologist - end of January
surgeon - early March (sooner, if I can get my port out after my next CT scan)

Posts: 110
Joined: Oct 2012

I think basically there is one doctor who is kindof picked out to be the point man. At least the first two years you go every 6 months. I am going every 3 months my first year. Frankly it's a security blanket for me. My friend who is an 18 year survivor insisted on having her appointments every six months (and still does to this day) even when they said she could go every year or so...she said NO WAY...I want to stay on top of this.

Posts: 653
Joined: Oct 2012

I tend to think my point person, when things settle into a routine, will be my oncologist.

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