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Preventative hysterectomy

EZLiving66's picture
EZLiving66
Posts: 1475
Joined: Oct 2015

Knowing how easy the surgery was for my hysterectomy using the DiVinci robot, I am wondering why more women don't have "preventative hysterectomies."  I know cost is one consideration but look at the number of cancers that could be prevented for post-menopausal women.  And, look what chemo and radiation costs!!  I understand why younger women probably wouldn't buy into the idea, but, at my age, I sure would!!

How do you like my new picture - taken on my birthday this week.  I have one with my birthday hat on but decided it was a little too much - LOL!!  I remember the Beatles song "Will you still need me; will you still feed me when I'm 64?"  I guess I'll find out soon enough - ha ha!!!  I received a battery-operated salt and pepper mill (son), two mosquito repellents (husband), handmade coasters and a $50 Olive Garden gift card (soon-to-be-daughter-in-law) - LOVE that girl!!

Love,

Eldri

janaes
Posts: 800
Joined: May 2016

Happy birthday Eldri,  Its my birthday this week. Tomarrow is the day.  I told my nurse that i didnt want to start my chemotheropy this week because it was my birthday.  Im going out to lunch for my birthday and eat really good before i start chemo to celebrate. I didnt even know that there were diferent hysterectomies before i had mine. 

brissance's picture
brissance
Posts: 192
Joined: May 2016

Eldri, You are indeed the sex goddess.  How awesome you look, not only you hair but your persona..  Happy birthday and many more.  My 64th is headed my way and I listened to that tune not too long ago,  Glad you had a great birthday.  

Janaes, I hope your birthday is spectacular.  Part of your birthday gift is the knowledge that you are about to give yourself life and health..  not a bad gift for you and your loved ones.  And if you are going to splurge on you birthday then eat some chocolate for me.  I have loved chocolate all my life.. but this chemo crap has ruined it for me...  yeppp I don't want chocolate.  so just in case, eat a Heath Bar or a Mr. Goodbar for me..  :P    

Again, Happy Birthday both of you fine ladies.

ksdehn30
Posts: 33
Joined: Oct 2008

I think alot of women with a family history of ovarian and uterine cancers have one.  But you are right, Eldri....they sure have perfected this surgery (davinci method) to make the recovery much more tolerable.  Happy birthday to you both!!!

Kvdyson's picture
Kvdyson
Posts: 789
Joined: Jan 2016

and your hair - it looks great! You look so beautiful! Happy birthday to you!

I'm thinking that insurance has a lot to do with more people not electing to have preventive hysterectomies. Unless you can show them that it is medically necessary, they probably wouldn't cover it.

NoTimeForCancer's picture
NoTimeForCancer
Posts: 2888
Joined: Mar 2013

Eldri, you look beautiful and HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!  Happy birthday to you too, janaes!

As for the surgery question, there are inherent risks - including death, from any surgery.  I serve on our condo board and the board president's sister died from sepsis after her Da Vinci hysterectomy.  I did talk with him because I suspected it might be hard on him to see me go through everything, including the Da Vinci.  I thought how hard it must be for him as I know I would be devasted by the loss of one of my sister.

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 936
Joined: Feb 2016

Happy, Happy Birthday!!!  And many, many more, dear one. Hair looks great!!!!

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1774
Joined: Jun 2015

Happy Birthday Eldri and Janaes! I hope you both have/had great days and we all celebrate many more!

Love and Hugs,

Cindi

Sandy3185's picture
Sandy3185
Posts: 228
Joined: Oct 2013

Your hair looks great! So glad it's coming back so thick and strong! Glad you are having a great birthday and remember that 60 is the new 50! Love and hugs, Sandy

EZLiving66's picture
EZLiving66
Posts: 1475
Joined: Oct 2015

That's what I keep telling myself, Sandy - 64 is the new 54 which is the new 44 which is the new 34 so when you logically think about it, I'm now 10 years younger than our oldest daughter - LOLOLOL!!!

Love,

Eldri

Double Whammy's picture
Double Whammy
Posts: 2831
Joined: Jun 2010

We're both Geminis!  My bd is the 16th and I will be 69!  OMG.  That's close to a really big number.

About preventative hysterectomies, I have this silly non-medical theory:  the longer you keep it, the more it has the opportunity to sit and fester.  I was going to have a prophylactic hysterectomy because I had had 3 endometrial biopsies over the years and I was sick of needing to have one.  My gyn said I was a good candidate for prophylactic hysterectomy and she would perform it because of my history.  I was 62 and I was sick of needing biopsies.    Well, that last biopsy said I had cancer, so I did have the hysterectomy, but for endo cancer not to avoid it.  I thought about prophylactic hysterectomies a lot when I was diagnosed with cancer.  Most of my friends had had hysterectomies for various reasons already and they were not going to get cancer, but here I was, 62 years old with all my parts, and they got sick and had to go.  I understand surgery is a risk, but it would have been less of a risk if it had been done on a younger me rather than an older me.  Bottom line I'm afraid is docs do not want to unecessarily remove a healthy uterus and put a patient's health and future in jeopardy for no reason.  Our uterus does serve a purpose in supporting the bladder and maybe some other pelvic anatomical functions.  I guess.  All I know is if I would have had a hysterectomy as a younger woman, I would not have had endometrial cancer - or ovarian - or cervical.

Suzanne

Suzanne

debrajo's picture
debrajo
Posts: 1095
Joined: Sep 2011

To all you ladies!  I BEGGED for eight years to have a preventive hysteroctomy, on bended knees to no avail.  Biggest reason?  "We wouldn't need to take out "healthy organs", now would  we?    Why, yes we would!   And it wasn't healthy....I knew 8 years before cancer that something was wrong.  Couldn't make a one of then listen.  Then when they find cancer, their question,....Why didn't you come in earlier?"  GRRRRRR!  Debra

Soup52's picture
Soup52
Posts: 906
Joined: Jan 2016

Happy birthday ladies! My husband will e 64 this week and I will be in December:) hysterectomies.... Well I had some really heavy periods going through menopause. maybe that was a signal for cancer. I mentioned it to my Gyno and if it happened again to let her know and she would do something about it. Alas it didn't happen again. Maybe I missed out on my chance for a hysterectomy then. Ahh hind site ... At any rate enjoy those birthdays and celebrate your new hair:)!

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

Eldri, I dunno...  I kinda want to see you with that birthday hat!  

Janaes, yes, go out, have a nice lunch, eat well and pamper yourself.  It's a great excuse to really focus on yourself and get yourself in the best frame of mind possible going into chemo.  I think you'll surprise yourself.

Chris

BC Brady's picture
BC Brady
Posts: 70
Joined: May 2015

Had my 58th in April - and never so happy to be this old. Birthdays are a wonderful thing. I am shouting from the rooftops about preventive hysterectomies. No uterus = no uterine cancer. I had no family or personal history and no bleeding. Just cramps and bloating and a 13 pound weight gain in a year, which everyone - including the gyn - chalked up to menopause. 18 months later, I'm still battling stage 4 endometrial. Now a brush fire in the lymph nodes. If I had the hysterectomy at the first appt for the internal ultrasound that showed a thickening uterus? I would've been stage 1 contained to the uterus. Saw my very first commercial for uterine cancer on TV last month. It said if you have bloating for more than 2 weeks, abdominal pain , or bleeding, go to your doctor to rule out cancer. Insead of ruling IN cancer, you know? There are 80,000 of us out here - diagnosed with uterine cancers every year - NOT including ovarian. Finally there's a commercial! Every step in the right direction is a step toward a cure - and better yet, more awareness for actively preventing this totally PREVENTABLE disease. I'll step off my soap box now -  xoxox my warriors!

Billie

hdjjlss
Posts: 7
Joined: Jul 2016

I had a hystrectomy last October (Stage !).  Everything removed.  I was told I was cured. Four months later I learned that the cancer had spread to the pelvic area even though it had not penetrated the endometrial wall.  Undergoing chemo now.  Maybe this will feel somewhat better since there really is no guarantee no matter what you do.  

Soup52's picture
Soup52
Posts: 906
Joined: Jan 2016

Yes, yes! The public needs more info about uterine cancer. No offense to all those with breast cancer and I have a few friends among them, but more info about uterine cancer needs to be out in the public eye!

fluteduo
Posts: 3
Joined: Jul 2016

At 84, have abnormal uterine bleeding and closed cervix makes it impossible to have biopsy. Gynecologists say it is not possible to get into uterus, even with anesthesia. They recommend hysterectomy without confirmation of cancer or pre-cancer cells. I don't know what to do, as I know surgery is tough at my age. I thought of a pelvic MRI. I have not had that, although I have had several ultrasounds (uterine wall measurement not reliable), pelvic exams, a negative Pap smear. Nothing confirms cancer, but my worry has stimulated the surgeon and my doctor to go with surgery to eliminate the possibility.

NoTimeForCancer's picture
NoTimeForCancer
Posts: 2888
Joined: Mar 2013

fluteduo, any bleeding after menopause is never good - that is for sure. See if your gyn can refer you to a gyncologic oncologist because if there is something when they get in there you want someone who knows what to look for and do.  There is always a risk with surgery, but you should get all the facts.  Please ask anything and I am sure the other ladies will jump in here. 

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
TeddyandBears_Mom
Posts: 1774
Joined: Jun 2015

Fluteduo - Welcome to the board. I hope your surgery goes well and they find zero cancer in the process. Please let us know how you are doing as you move along in your treatments. And, feel free to ask anything. Someone will most likely have an answer.  I agree with NoTime. If you can have an Oncology GYN do your surgery, that is the best.

Love and Hugs,

Cindi

fluteduo
Posts: 3
Joined: Jul 2016

I was cared for by a gynecologist who does not want to rush into anything. I was examined by an excellent oncologist gynecologist last week, who also said there is no rush, but said that there was no way anyone can get a biopsy from my cervix. She said she now recommends surgery (despite the risks) after which I would be given Vagifem, which would be safe for me. And I would not have worries about whether or not I have cancer causing the bleeding. My questions are, should I get a second opinion - especially about the possibility of a D and C with closed cervix. Also, what about waiting through the summer now that I am off estrogen. (I was put on estrogen in January when the bleeding first occurred. The Premarin did increase my bleeding. ) I have been off Premarin for 2 weeks now and my bleeding pattern has returned to the same as last January before Premarin.I honestly don't know what to do. I am so afraid of unnecesssary surgery especially at my age. Thanks so much for supporting me.

 

NoTimeForCancer's picture
NoTimeForCancer
Posts: 2888
Joined: Mar 2013

fluteduo, you are right to be concerned about the risks associated with surgery.  No surgery is "simple" and certainly not risk-free.  I recall the list of possible side effects I could have had as a result of surgery and what they called "minor" I certainly considered "major".  

From all the things I have read since being diagnosed in 2012 bleeding after menopause is never good.  I wonder how the doctors know what they are going to put you on without even know what you have.  I don't want to scare you, I just am thinking out loud through the key board.  I recall speaking with a gyn onc once at an event  six months ago and she told me how she had a patient who was older and had other health issues - it makes recommending treatment more difficult.  Ultimately, they are looking at the patient on the whole, not as a part - like a uterous - and all the implications that are associated with surgery. 

fluteduo, since a D&C is through the cervix, I am not sure if they could do it.  Please let us know what you chose and how you are doing. 

Soup52's picture
Soup52
Posts: 906
Joined: Jan 2016

I was able to have a D and C even though my dr couldn't get through the cervix with the simpler test, so maybe that could be possible for you. I had mine at an outpatient facility and I was put out for the procedure.

fluteduo
Posts: 3
Joined: Jul 2016

I have decided to get a second opinion. Perhaps someone else will be able to do a D and C. I keep hearing from people who say it still can be done, but my gyncecologist and oncologist/gynecologist say it can't. Surgery decision is taking up so much of my thoughts! Thank you for your responses, all.

MAbound
Posts: 1124
Joined: Jun 2016

Belated Birthday Wishes Eldri!

I think a lot of us look back at what we shoulda, woulda, coulda done to not be dealing with what we are now. If only….

But I get where doctors are hesitant to remove body parts prophylactically.  What we have is all so interconnected and works in a complex, delicate balance with each other beyond primary purposes.  Our lady parts do so much more for us beyond reproduction. Losing them, even in necessity, is not going to be without other consequences down the road for some of us.  We’d rather have a reduced risk of dealing with cancer over other issues, but those issues can be disabling and life threatening, too. It’s a lot to think about!

 

 

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