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Complex Ovarian Cyst / Possible Ovarian Cancer

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I am being told that I could possibly have ovarian cancer. I dont think that I am getting very good treatment and I have a lot of unanswered questions. So if anyone has any information it would really help me.

I am not sure where to begin so I will start from what I know.

My family history is full of cancer. The entire time my mother was pregnant with me she has cancer in her uterus. Also I have family members with ovarian cancer and cervical cancer.

I started my period when I was about 10 in age. I had a very normal period every month without any problems. When I was 16 I got pregnant and gave birth to a healthy baby boy. A couple of years later I started having issues with pain in the pelvic area and my periods. I went to the doctors and had blood work and ultrasounds done. The only thing they found was a few small simple cysts on both ovaries. Which I was told that was not causing the problems that I was having. After dealing with this for a while I ended up in the ER.. A day later I was in surgery having my gallbladder removed. After the surgery the doctors explained to me that they didnt see anything wrong with my gallbladder but removed it anyways just in case. Well the pain never went away.. Finally after seeing 6 doctors I was diagnosed with PCOS in 1999. I was put on 2 different birth control at the same time to try to stop the cyst. Which worked. In June 2001 I had a period that lasted 2 weeks after that ended I did not have another one until October 2006. A little over 5 years with nothing. And at that time no doctor could explain. Well in October 2006 I had an ultrasound done because of an kidney infection. A complex cyst about 2cm was found on the left ovary. I was told that it was nothing to worry about. In Feb 2007 I had another ultrasound performed due to pain in the area. The same cyst was present but this time about 2.6 cm in size. The doctor ran some blood work and told me there was nothing to worry about. Well for the past month I have been feeling very sick. I have had a lot of pain in the area of the cyst, lower back pain, ongoing bloating, no energy, nausea, a major change in my period, major headaches. I was finally able to get an appointment to be seen by my primary care doctor. During an exam he noted that the cyst was now atleast 4cm and that there was a lot of free fuild in the area. He told me that there is a good chance that this is ovarian cancer given my history with PCOS (which I was told put me at a higher risk) and my family history of cancer. He referred me to the OB/GYN. A couple of days ago they called to set up my appointment and told me that there is no rush and set my appointment for a month from now. Which I dont understand because if they are worried this is cancer why are they waiting and not doing anything. I honestly dont think that I am getting the best of care but there is nothing that I can do. My husband is active duty military so I have to be seen at the Military hospital that he is stationed at. And due to a major baby boom here they are putting all other appointments to the side. It makes me feel like since my doctors are not concerned I shouldnt be either. But I am so confused. If someone could give some advice that would be great.......
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replied September 21st, 2007
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Hi Sweetie! Me Fairy*godmother
I feel so sorry for you, wish I could give you a big hug and tell you everythign is gonna be ok. It will be......I would call your doctor and tell them taht you will take any cancellation that becomes available, that might get you in quicker. The other only alternative is for you to find an OBGYN and pay for them from your own pocket. I understand the feeling of anxiety and you ask why are they acting as though its nothing. You are worried and I understand that too. Oh, and when you call the physicans office try asking to speak to someone directly and tell them you are high risk and are very worried as to why they can't make a sooner appointment. Feel free to PM me if you'd like. I'm a Mom to a 24 year old and have a history of cancer in my family as well!
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replied September 21st, 2007
Especially eHealthy
First off, they shouldn't have said the cancer word at all until they knew for sure ~ because nothing is as scary as thinking you may have cancer and not knowing. Knowing is way easier than worrying about it.

Cysts do not have to be cancerous. Lots of women have common every day cysts all the time. Even if you have a family history of cancer. Although, for your information, cervical cancer IS NOT hereditary. It is caused by the HPV virus. So if the doctors led you to believe anything differently, then that was wrong. Also, I have not heard that your risk of Ovarian Cancer would be greater with PCOS, but that endometrial cancer can be higher. PCOS causes missed periods. So that could potentially explain why you wouldn't have had a period for 5 years.

By some of your complaints, it sounds like it could be endometriosis:

Quote:
What are the symptoms of endometriosis?
Pain is one of the most common symptoms of endometriosis. Usually the pain is in the abdomen, lower back, and pelvis. The amount of pain a woman feels does not depend on how much endometriosis she has. Some women have no pain, even though their disease affects large areas. Other women with endometriosis have severe pain even though they have only a few small growths. Symptoms of endometriosis include:

Very painful menstrual cramps
Pain with periods that gets worse over time
Chronic pain in the lower back and pelvis
Pain during or after sex
Intestinal pain
Painful bowel movements or painful urination during menstrual periods
Heavy and/or long menstrual periods
Spotting or bleeding between periods
Infertility (not being able to get pregnant)
Fatigue
Women with endometriosis may also have gastrointestinal problems such as diarrhea, constipation, or bloating, especially during their periods.

Who usually gets endometriosis?
About five million women in the United States have endometriosis. This makes it one of the most common health problems for women.

In general, women with endometriosis:

get their monthly period
are 27-years-old on average
have symptoms for two to five years before finding out they have the disease
Women who have gone through menopause (when a woman stops having her period) rarely still have symptoms.

What can raise my chances of getting endometriosis?
You are more likely to develop endometriosis if you:

began getting your period at an early age
have heavy periods
have periods that last more than seven days
have a short monthly cycle (27 days or less)
have a close relative (mother, aunt, sister) with endometriosis

The only way to know for sure if you have endometriosis is to have a surgery called laparoscopy. In this procedure, a tiny cut is made in your abdomen. A thin tube with a light is placed inside to see growths from endometriosis. Sometimes doctors can diagnose endometriosis just by seeing the growths. Other times, they need to take a small sample of tissue, or a biopsy, and study it under a microscope.



That all said, speak up about the care you are receiving. If you are having problems, make noise. Let people know. You have to advocate for your own health.


Good luck!! And let us know what happens.
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replied September 21st, 2007
Update
I talked with my primary care doctor today and after testing the free fluid he is scheduling an ultrasound and some other test to be done prior to my appointment with the OB/GYN. He said he wants to be able to have all results in for the doctor to read at that appointment. Either way, I am still confused about what is going on because they are not giving me too much information.
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replied September 22nd, 2007
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Hi Sweetie! Me Fairy*godmother
Because they DO NOT KNOW................ I have so many friends who are doctors and the honest ones will tell you...its usually an educated guess. They have the degree to say what it is and what it is not....based on the findings.....which can take weeks and months.....You are going to be confused until you persist to sontinues asking questions until you find an answer or go back to your original doctor.
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replied September 22nd, 2007
Especially eHealthy
Re: Update
erica80 wrote:
I talked with my primary care doctor today and after testing the free fluid he is scheduling an ultrasound and some other test to be done prior to my appointment with the OB/GYN. He said he wants to be able to have all results in for the doctor to read at that appointment. Either way, I am still confused about what is going on because they are not giving me too much information.


Make a list of questions you have for your doctor so when you see him/her you won't forget them. Take someone with you to help you remember what is said. When we get emotional about things, we don't always hear the information we are given. We tend to hear only what is worse or what we want to / fear to hear.

Good luck!
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