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Waiting for biopsy, have a questions...

1971
Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2018

Hi, first I would like to thank all of you! I joined this group after days of reading discussion threads, everyone is so supportive, brave and honest- it made me feel safe to join. As I am waiting for my biopsy and I do not have any answers, I have no intention of saying anything to my family and friends. So again, greatful for a safe place to ask questions. 

About me: I am 47 years old, and postmenapausal. In 2016 I had one period in November. I had blood tests done in September to confirm that I was in menopause. Then in June of this year I suddenly had a very heavy period. My doctor sent me for a intervaginal ultrasound and the results showed that my uterine lining was 21mm thick.  I am now waiting for my biopsy to be scheduled and was told it could be up to 4 weeks. 

I do not want to jump to conclusions and assume the worse, and I am someone who believes information is power, and I have set up to learn as much as I can. At this point I have been told that it is about a 10% chance that this is cancer. for the last 6 months I have also had lower abdominal cramping pain, well maybe pain is to strong a word- pressure for the most part, with sometomes shooting pain.  Sometimes the pain in my pelvis feels like a UTI? Nut it is not? I also have shooting pain down my legs and behind my knees. I also have a pretty regular pressure radiating feeling on my tailbone. I also have a very swollen stomach, so much so that my doctor sent me for an ultra sound to check for fluid?  I also have a yellowy dicharge fairly consistantly. I also feel pressure like I have to pee when I don't, but not all the time? I am overweight ( quite a lot)  , a smoker ( just started medication to quit) and I started my menstral cycle at age 10. I have had no unexplained weight loss so that makes me hopeful.

Here are some of my questions:

1. does the biopsy hurt? It is not the DnC one- just the suction one- what can I expect?

2. What does the leg and back pain connected to Uterine cancer feel like? Is it sharp and really painful? or could this mild cramping with sometimes shooting pain be connected? could the pressure feeling on my tailbone be connected?

3. Is swelling connected? my feet and ankles swell often.

4. could these sypmtoms also be part of  Hyperplaisia?

5. Could my swollen stomach be connected to cancer? 

A very greatful thank you in advance to anyone who takes the time to respond. I promise to update either way - one of the most frustrating things is to find a thread that sounds so much like your own story, and see it was from 2013 and follow up!

 

 

pato58's picture
pato58
Posts: 97
Joined: Jun 2018

I just had my hysterectomy, 11 days ago. Kudos for joining this board. I am 60 years old. A lot of the symtoms you say about pain on knees and the back of your legs I also experienced. As you may know, 21 mm thickness is considerable. Mine was 5mm and still was endometrioid adenocarcinoma. But you could also have polyps. I would advise to push for an Hysteroscopy with D&C, instead of a regular endometrial biopsy where the Dr removes tissue randomly. Does your medical plan allows you to visit a gyn-oncology without referral? That would be ideal.
Keep in touch Smile

1971
Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2018

HI, thank you for your reply! Ya the 21mm freaked me out, I had him confirm it three times! I will ask about the DnC Biopsy, I am pretty sure it will be covered (Canadian). I hope that your recovery is going well!

Soup52's picture
Soup52
Posts: 871
Joined: Jan 2016

I agree with Pato about getting a DAnd C. I couldn’t have the other biopsy. My cerviix woulnt open. Prayers for you! You are being proactive so I hope you get some positive answers.

1971
Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2018

Thank you so much for your prayers! It's the waiting for answers part that is making me try and be proactive, at least I feel like I am doing something! 

MugsBugs
Posts: 100
Joined: Jan 2018

The day I told my GP that I had bleeding (postmenopausal) she set me to a gyno the same day for a biopsy. It wasnt pleasant 

but not excruciating - not too much more than a good menstrual cramp.  Don’t get ahead of yourself..  you are young and chances are you don’t have cancer.  If the biopsy comes back suspicious then get the D&C with hystroscopy.  The will provide a better diagnosis!  

 

Let us us know how you are progressing.  Praying it is nothing!

1971
Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2018

Thank you! A good reminder, I do tend to get ahead of myself! I have to remember to take the information as it comes! 

NoTimeForCancer's picture
NoTimeForCancer
Posts: 2484
Joined: Mar 2013

1971, good for you for wanting info and trying not to get too far ahead of yourself.  To answer your Qs:

1. does the biopsy hurt? It is not the DnC one- just the suction one- what can I expect?  My gyn bailed trying to give me a biopsy and went for the D&C.  I am glad she did - I think it was probably a more complete sample.

2. What does the leg and back pain connected to Uterine cancer feel like? Is it sharp and really painful? or could this mild cramping with sometimes shooting pain be connected? could the pressure feeling on my tailbone be connected? Everyone is different - please try not to get too far ahead of yourself.

3. Is swelling connected? my feet and ankles swell often.  Everyone is different - please try not to get too far ahead of yourself.

4. could these sypmtoms also be part of  Hyperplaisia?  Everyone is different - please try not to get too far ahead of yourself.

5. Could my swollen stomach be connected to cancer? Everyone is different - please try not to get too far ahead of yourself.

I will say, if they find you have cancer in the gyn track ask to work with a GYNECOLOGIC ONCOLOGIST.  You do not want a gyn only - the gyn onc took extra training in this area and, if they keeep up on the changing times, all the better.  There are different types of cancer, believe it or not, they even refer to one as a "typical garden variety type" - what the heck?  

I never even THOUGHT about cancer when I had my D&C - and yet, here I am, 5+ years later.  My advice is take a breath and know that we are here should you need us.

1971
Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2018

Ahh a huge Thank you! and good advice! If it turns out to be cancer- I will ask about a Gynecologic Oncologist! Not getting ahead of myself is hard and I am so greatful to you for taking the time to extend this advice!

Armywife's picture
Armywife
Posts: 194
Joined: Feb 2018

Just want to encourage you to take one thing at a time.  Lots of things can cause lots of things, but no point in wasting energy until you know more.  I had a suction biopsy, and it was uncomfortable but not painful, and was really quick.  I am a big baby when it comes to pain and pelvic exams, and I wasn't sure I could do it - dissolved in tears beforehand and was scared to death.  I had a wonderful doc and nurse, and they were kind and patient, and it really wasn't so bad.  They told me that it was a 95% chance that it wasn't cancer.  I had had an ultrasound that showed 17mm thickness, which is unusual for my age (57 and 3 years past menopause at that time.)  Unfortunately, I was in the 5%, so they scheduled a robotic hysterectomy and said there was a 95% chance that it would be stage I grade I.  Again I was in the 5%, but we did chemo and are moving forward daily with a hopeful heart!  All of this is do-able.  Just take a breath and take each challenge as it comes.

1971
Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2018

Thank you for sharing your experiance! From what I am hearing, a DnC would be a good next step,  I still have some tome time to wait so focusing on one thing at a time is good advice! I will update when I know more! I hope you are doing well!

MrsBerry
Posts: 102
Joined: Dec 2017

Hello, 1971. My experience with the “regular” endo biopsy was, frankly, excruciating, my post-menopausal cervix was shut tight. I called a halt and scheduled a d&c. Do yourself a favor and go for d&c right off the bat, if possible. They will get a more complete sample and you will know more definitively if you do or do not have cancer.

Good luck, please keep us posted.

1971
Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2018

Thank you for taking the time to respond! I am now prepared to take some pain relief before I go! I hope this helps! Sounds like I should get a DnC, but I don't think I have a choice? They have "steps" they have to take!I will keep updating, after this wait is over... Again Thank you!

CheeseQueen57's picture
CheeseQueen57
Posts: 757
Joined: Feb 2016

Endometrial biopsy hurts like hell and in my case they couldn’t even get enough tissue to get a good sample. Just get a D&Cto get a definitive answer. I don’t know why they even do endometrial biopsies!

1971
Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2018

According to my doctor, there are " steps" they have to take, so they wont just send me for the DnC- Thanks to all your advice, I will take some pain meds before and I will be mentally prepared for it to hurt! Thank you so much for taking the time to answer my question!

cmb's picture
cmb
Posts: 282
Joined: Jan 2018

I've had three tries at having an endometrial biopsy done – once for what turned out to be a benign polyp many years ago and twice for my current cancer saga. While I don't consider myself to be a total wimp when it comes to pain, in each case I nearly jumped off the table. It felt like an icepick was being shoved into me. None could be completed.

I was happy to have the D&C instead, especially in the most recent case since we learned that my cancer was an aggressive type. That information helped the gynecological oncologist plan pre-surgical steps (CA125 test, CT scan, and colonoscopy) and also directed his approach during surgery.

derMaus's picture
derMaus
Posts: 504
Joined: Nov 2016

...those biopsies HURT like a MOTHER and don't let anyone tell you otherwise. I have a high pain threshold but that one made me holler; they had to stop until I could take my own motrin and Xanax, god forbid they had prepared me. [Yet another reason I hated my first young, female, insensitive gyne/onc.] And, if they don't 'grab' from just the right place, it's all for naught. It's like taking a punch sample out of anything: if the punch instrument doesn't hit just the right spot to locate bad tissue, they just get a bunch of regular tissue. Of course by the time my cancer was discovered it had covered 99%++ of my uterus so there was no problem in identification, but that's another story. If you do proceed with a biopsy, make them give you drugs or at least take your own in advance. 

1971
Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2018

Thank you, I hope that being prepared and taking some pain meds before hand will help, I think I have a good pain tolerance - and will be mentally prepared for it hurt, I hope that you are doing okay, for taking the time to answer my questiona! It does sound like the DnC would be the best option! 

cmb's picture
cmb
Posts: 282
Joined: Jan 2018

I know that some women have had the endometrial biopsies with little or no pain. Unfortunately that wasn't the case for some of us. And as derMaus noted, the sampling has to hit the spot where the tumor is in order to accurately determine what's going on.

In my case, my insurance company wanted me to try the less invasive approach first before they would authorize the D&C. That may be the case with your insurer as well.

You may also want to ask your doctor if using misoprostol before the procedure would be helpful. I did use this before my two D&Cs, but have wondered if I would have had an easier time with the biopsies if I had dilated the cervix beforehand.

As Northwoodsgirl noted, this initial period before you know completely what is going on is very difficult for everyone. Keep us posted on what you learn as testing proceeds.

Northwoodsgirl
Posts: 486
Joined: Oct 2009

I am sorry you are going through this pending biopsy or whatever diagnostic procedure/test you decide is best.

I was 52 yrs old and post menopausal at the time of diagnosis.  I had ultrasound which was normal and then biopsy which ended up positive for endometrial adenocarcinoma. I would recommend more than a biopsy but there are practice guidelines physicians follow. However, the decision is between you and your physician.

Your other symptoms are likely to be related to your overall health and not directly to cancer. My heart goes out to you as you try to cope with this unbelievable time of uncertainty. It is a very lonely time since most of us don’t want to burden our friends and family with the agonizing uncertainty of being diagnosed with cancer.

I pray time passes quickly as you anticipate your testing and diagnosis. No matter what procedure you choose talk to the doctor’s nurse or doctor about what can be done to control any pain associated with the procedure.

You will soon learn to be your own best advocate ( if you are not yet already) in all things related to your body and what your options and choices are in whatever medical condition(s) you are facing. Post again and let us know how you are doing. We care and are here to support you! Remember you have lived many years and faced many adverse situations in your life and are resilient. 

(((Hug)))

Lori

1971
Posts: 10
Joined: Jul 2018

Oh my gosh, your post and your kind words, have brought me to tears! Thank you! So So much! I promise to update when I have answers! And thank you for reminding me how strong I am and that I can advacate for myself! 

 

XO Thank you!

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