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Making decisions

Donna Faye's picture
Donna Faye
Posts: 430
Joined: Jan 2017

If you are reading this, you have all had to make decisions about your doctors, your treatments, etc. I have made a decision and if any of you want to chime in, you are welcome - good or bad. As many of you know, I am 79 years old(April), have had BC in 1997; uterine, 2017: recurrance,2018. Because of the recurrance I had to have additional Bracky, so a total of 8 plus 25 pelvic external. So far, that is more Bracky than anyone I know. As a result, my vaginal wall is very scarred. I have tried the dilation for 6 mos. and it has resulted in bleeding every day. I have grown very weary of this ( also on blood thinners which make it worse). After talking with my doctors, I have decided to stop, as I am only doing it to make exams easier and no other need! We will depend on scans, how I feel, etc. to detect any future cancer. My quality of life has been poor because of the stress of the daily bleeding. I am fearful to leave the house as I don't know what to expect. I need to be back in water aerobics for my joints and OA. So, after trying again for the last 5 days, I have said ENOUGH! 

Otherwise I am doing great, but I know myself and this is depressing me and making me less active. Why am I sharing? Because it helps me to state it and if this beast of USPC returns, so be it. But I don't want to live like I am on my period 24/7,365 !  Decision made. Life goes on!

Thanks to all of you for being on this board!


Posts: 1091
Joined: Jun 2016

Quality of life matters and it's really questionable if using a dialator is going to do much good with as much scarring as you must have after so much brachytherapy. They use cameras on scopes for everywhere else, why not for pelvic exams in cases such as yours? 

TeddyandBears_Mom's picture
Posts: 1708
Joined: Jun 2015

I think that is a great decision! Especially since there are alternatives ways to check your cuff. You are way too active to stop being so because of this issue.

Posting is a great thing to do. You never know when it may help someone else that is too afraid to talk about it.

Take care Donna Faye!

Love and Hugs,


NoTimeForCancer's picture
Posts: 2841
Joined: Mar 2013

ah Faye.  You sound like you have peace - and that is what any of us would want for you.  With everything you have going on, I don't think any of us would differ in our assessment.  

Donna Faye's picture
Donna Faye
Posts: 430
Joined: Jan 2017

See, that is why I post! Never thought about the camera but remember they did that 10 years ago for a look into the uterus!  Yes, I am at peace. I read a lot of medical papers and there is little proof who gets stenosis and who does not.

Love you gals!

Posts: 800
Joined: May 2016

Donna Faye, i here you. I have had two cancers. One twenty plus years ago. I had about 20 radiation treatments in my chest area and about twenty just below that.  I cant remenber the accual numbers since its been so long. It was every day for four weeks at least for each area. 

Any ways when i went to talk to my radiation doctor at the begining of treatment for uterine cancer almost 3 years ago he told me he wouldnt do external radiation for my uterine cancer because it was too close to the other radiation i did. I had MMMt cancer and some peple accually did external radation for my type of cancer. I felt good about what the doctor said partly because of what he said and because my oncologist believed my uterine cancer was caused by the radiation given to me twenty plus years ago.  

I thought the same thing you did.  If my cancer comes back so be it. My worse fear is that it will but at the same time i wont feel guilty about not doing the external radiation this time. I did what i felt was right for me. It was either do radiation again whch could cause cancer or dont have it an have a reacurance.  Either way was felt like the same result could be cancer. So i decided why put me throught radiaton again which could cause side effects.

You are a great exsample to me in the spot your at. Quality of life does matter. Thats a tough desision but i do see your point in stopping. I might be in your spot one day.

EZLiving66's picture
Posts: 1452
Joined: Oct 2015

I would do the same thing! Quality of life becomes so important as we age.  Hopefully, our healthcare providers understand this. 



Jairoldi's picture
Posts: 221
Joined: May 2017

We all have to weigh our options and make the best decision we can for ourselves. I promised my family that I would do everything the doctors wanted to throw at me. Once. I'm with you on quality and deciding what's right for you.

Donna Faye's picture
Donna Faye
Posts: 430
Joined: Jan 2017

Thank you all...I am feeling so positive with all your encouragement. I plan to resume water aerobics this week and know this will lift my spirits.  I am also planning on getting a personl trainer to get my muscle strength back so I can ride horses in the spring. Time to do what I want and not be afraid of tomorrow. xoxox

Posts: 299
Joined: Oct 2017

Love all your plans, Donna Faye. It makes perfect sense to me to stop with the dilator. I would have done the same thing if I were you. Enjoy your water aerobics! 

Donna Faye's picture
Donna Faye
Posts: 430
Joined: Jan 2017

I was in the pool at 9:30 this morning and was there for an hour doing water aerobics. That felt great but so did all my buddies welcoming me back and telling me how good I looked! Came home and walked the dog for 30 minutes and am telling you all, this is the first time I have felt like me in 6 months!!!!  My daily routine had been - wake, walk the dog, go back to bed for the dreaded dilation, then just want to stay in the bed rather than deal with the day's bleeding. Boy was that getting OLD.  I don't know if my story helps anyone, but it sure has made me rethink how life needs to be lived. Some times one just has to go with the gut and do it. Loving how I feel today! 

Posts: 55
Joined: Feb 2019

What wonderful  encouragement  Donna Faye. I haven't had chemo yet and am dreading the thought of radiation  and what damage it can do. I am STAGE 2 serous and lympnodes were clear and pelvic wash clear. I will  start chemo soon and possibly can have some sort of test before making a decision  on  radiation. As far as using the dialator dreading that thought as well.

Posts: 366
Joined: Jul 2018

I had only 3 brachytherapy and was not given a dilator. I just had my first internal exam and there was no problem. I questioned my team about it after reading comments on the board but they did not think it necessary. I had a radical hysterectomy so there is no cervix anymore. So there is no one answer or approach. Hope this helps. 



Posts: 55
Joined: Feb 2019

Hi Denise yes it does help thank you

derMaus's picture
Posts: 561
Joined: Nov 2016

Your post makes my heart glad, Donna Faye! I love the new picture, too. It's good to know you'll be back in the saddle soon. Thank you for giving us the good news.

Soup52's picture
Posts: 904
Joined: Jan 2016

Yes, Donnafaye no dialator. I have barely used it and myPA last time said I shouldn’t bother. My husband has prostate cancer so no sex either which is fine with me at this stage of life. Enjoy life!

Tamlen's picture
Posts: 282
Joined: Jan 2018

I hope you're already feeling better and getting back to the joy of living.

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