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Change in diagnosis and question

SandyD's picture
SandyD
Posts: 130
Joined: Oct 2015

Had surgery 3 weeks ago. I learned from my pathology report that instead of UPSC, my cancer is carcinosarcoma. Report says: "CARCINOSARCOMA (5.5 cm) consisting of serous carcinoma and a spindle cell mesenchymal component in a polypoid mass." 

From what I've learned online this is definitely not a better diagnosis than UPSC. Hope to learn more about the implications for treatment when I have my 3 week appointment tomorrow. I'm pretty much assuming chemo and maybe radiation are in my future. Would love to hear from others with this diagnosis.

My question is about typical treatment schedules. Is this generally a once a week thing or is it multiple days? How long did (or will) your treatment last? 

I ask this question because I'm trying to schedule the rest of my life. Specifically I hope to keep my hand in some limited work, (1) because it will get my mind off of my situation and (2) because it will be very helpful financially. One of the opportunities I have won't even require me to leave home since I'll be teaching a class online along with a co-instructor. I'll need to do some individual consultation with students but it will all be done in an online meeting room. The other opportunity will involve a somewhat long drive to work with a client in the family's home but it will only be once a week. If chemo is on a once a week schedule I'm thinking I can schedule both work activities for Monday (the class is on Monday nights) and Tuesday and have chemo on Wednesdays with the rest of the week to recover.

Does this sound reasonable? I know that it's really difficult to predict how someone will do on chemo and that side effects vary, but based on your own experience does this sound do-able? 

NoTimeForCancer's picture
NoTimeForCancer
Posts: 2775
Joined: Mar 2013

SandyD, I am sure you are trying to figure it all out with the change in dx!  

I will preface this with "everyone is different", but I was able to work through it all and traveling is part of my job.  I did have to take the day off for chemo, it was an all day (6 hour-ish) deal, and popped out of the office to hit the radiation.

It seems from the ladies here they vary a little bit on the schedule.  Mine was 3 chemo (once a day every 3 weeks), 25 external radiation (those were fast), 3 internal (relatively fast - had to wait for the doctor to insert the wand) and then another 3 chemo (once a day every 3 weeks).

Each treatment has side effects, but looking back, I was able to do a lot.  

Treatment does lower your immunity, so you may want to be careful of shaking hands, people with colds, etc....

For me, I took probiotics before, during, and still do, and I think that helped me with some of the side effects from the treatment.  

I am sure the other great ladies of this board will chime in.  Looking back, I can say it was all "doable" but it doesn't always feel that way when you are in the middle of it all.  

Take care

Editgrl's picture
Editgrl
Posts: 903
Joined: Jun 2015

Sandy, I also have carcinosarcoma.  At least here in the states, chemo is usually the front line treatment.  I will be finishing up the 6th of 6 rounds every 3 weeks on Friday.  Though I have not been working much due to reasons unrelated to treatment, I certainly could have, especially since I, too, do a sizable amount of work from home.  My side effects have been minimal, uncomfortable, but not debilitating.  

In my experience, the first couple of days after chemo I feel pretty normal, with some fatigue hitting on days 3 and 4, then my energy level begins to come back up and I feel pretty normal by 6-7 days afterwards.  My energy level does still drop in the evenings (I fall asleep in front of the TV far more often than I used to) unless I am actively engaged in something.  

My doctor has recommended radiation as well, and I am currently weighing the pros and cons of that.  What stage are you at?  My doctor told me that no matter what stage I was, this was before surgery, that he would recommend chemo and probably brachytherapy because of the aggressiveness of this cancer.

As you probably know from your research, and I know well the stomach-dropping reaction after searching Mr. Google, it is an extremely aggressive cancer, however there are women on this board who have had it and are doing well.  Please feel free to PM me.

You can do this.

Chris

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