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Cervical Cancer treatment and 2nd opinion

Jewelzaz's picture
Jewelzaz
Posts: 4
Joined: Jan 2018

 I was diagnosed in November 2017 with cervical cancer. I was told it was stage one and although the tumor was fair in size my prognosis was good and my outcome would be positive. Where I’ve been going for treatment they did a form of an aggressive attack and approach to the cancer with beliefs that they would cure me all based on studies.  I started my treatments in December of chemo with external radiation. Chemo was once a week and radiation was five days a week. It was hard on me but I was doing all right and making it through until around the end of December/beginning of January. I started to have a lot of health and energy issues because of the chemo. Whenever I would try to talk to doctors about feeling like I needed a break I was encouraged to continue and told it was imperative that I continue without taking any breaks.  I did wind up taking a break the last week of December because I was sick with a cold and only did radiation that week. I felt better and was doing all right and ready to start the new year. On New Year’s Day my family was in a rollover accident. I wound up with road rash on my arm and the typical neck back shoulder issues. That week I still went to radiation and chemo. I began to struggle greatly starting to have anxiety because of the pain in my body trying to make it to treatments. My blood work would show low potassium and I was given pills. I tried to talk to doctors again and I kept getting the it’s imperative that you finish and do the best you can to be here.  My last chemo did not go well, but I finished it. My last radiation I just finished this week on Wednesday. I started getting phone calls about scheduling my next procedure of internal radiation immediately the next week… Which would be this Monday. Again I talked to doctors about the anxiety and needing a break and again I kept getting told well you’ll have a few days hopefully you’ll get over it but it’s imperative that you finish. I was having discomfort and not feeling right about my treatment any longer and wanted to discuss the treatment and see about changing it and seeing what other options exist and got nowhere. I decided perhaps I should get a second opinion.  I called and spoke with a patient advocate for Cancer Treatments Centers of America and when I was telling him about everything he was surprised that they weren’t letting me have a break in between treatments to let my body at least have some time to heal. He was surprised that there was no testing done at all during the chemo and radiation stage to see if the treatments are effective or not. He was also surprised to hear that no testing was going to be done between the external and internal radiation to see where everything was cancer wise and if it was even necessary. I was also told that yes it’s important to finish my treatments and become cancer free… However, it didn’t have to be done within a matter of days like that and there were options and that I have time since the chemo and radiation are still in my body. All I know is it just kept not feeling right in my body about the whole thing and the more I tried to push myself to struggle through the worse it was. I even stopped going to the chiropractor because of all the stress overwhelming me. So I then called and left a message with the facility saying I was getting a second opinion to cancel the procedure they had me scheduled for and to not call me to allow me the time I need to think and look into things. Within a few hours my phone and my husband’s phone rang nonstop because they kept calling with the same message that it is imperative that I finish and come on Monday. Including having a doctor I’ve never met leave me a message. We would not talk to them any longer and then finally the doctor who is my actual doctor left a message saying she’s willing to talk instead. I have also met someone during my treatments who went through the same aggressive approach and is currently being treated for a different cancer as it spread. I looked through a few discussions on here and saw others have had recurrence of cancer or issues with that same approach after finishing. I have not seen a positive about the last step of internal radiation and I really do not like the idea of it at all. I’m seeking a 2nd opinion now and am scared that without having monitored the progress of what I just put myself through. I’m still dealing with the accident and the anxiety as well. Unfortunately, my insurance wants me to fly out of state to utilize Cancer Treatment Centers of America instead of going to the one that’s here in my state and now I’m looking into local options. I need to heal, I’m scared, and trying my best to trudge through. I came here for support to help me move forward and to get help in general. 

NoTimeForCancer's picture
NoTimeForCancer
Posts: 2572
Joined: Mar 2013

Jewelzaz, I am not a doctor, so I am not sure what dose of chemo you had each week - it is a possible schedule as I have a friend getting this - it is a different cancer, but it comes down to dosage.  Radiatio is extremely tiring, but external is usually daily Mon - Fri type of thing.  Getting a second opinion is pretty good, but no matter where you go make sure you are working with a gynecologic oncologist. 

I hope you get some answers.

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