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; on ovary - handhold please
I was referred for a scan due to heavy periods. They found a suspected cyst on one ovary, and rescanned this week (a couple of months after the first scan) to see if it had gone. It hadn't. I'd already made a GP appointment to follow up the scan next week, but they just called back saying they wanted to see me ASAP, but aren't pushing for me to come in any sooner.
I'm utterly terrified. I'm 40 years old and I have three very small children. I'm now fearing the worst. I've stopped myself from googling, but I do know that ovarian cancer is not a great one to have. I know there's other things it could be, but getting a phone call from the doctor has really put me in a spin. I have some of the symptoms of cancer, but not all, and some of those symptoms could be attributed to something else, like endometriosis, which the sonographer suggested as a possibility.
I just don't know what to think. There's no cancer in my immediate family, but I have experienced others having it (not ovarian though) and the outcomes haven't been good. I'd kept it from my husband until the doctor's phone call, when I broke down a bit. He's being sympathetic, but is trying to convince me I don't have the symptoms, when I know I sort of have some of them. But surely everybody gets things like bloating, abdominal pain and tiredness sometimes?
I don't even know why I'm writing here. None of you can tell me that it'll all be ok. I just felt like writing it down.
I know the worry you're feeling because I've been there. In similar circumstances I was given an appointment with the consultant at hospital within 48 hours, and family members have had same day appointments for things which are equally serious. The fact your appointment is being kept as next week and with your GP is reassuring to my mind. The NHS works really quickly when they strongly suspect cancer.
I know it's easy to jump to the worst possible scenario but hopefully this might help you to put it into perspective a little. It is so hard at the time though
I suppose it is slightly reassuring that the GP isn't insisting on seeing me tomorrow, but the sonographer said that the report would be sent to the GP by the end of the week, and it was done the same day. Ultra efficient staff and system or worried sonographer?
I know there's nothing anybody can say that will reassure me until I know something more, but I am going to struggle to work and be normal. Tonight s my husband's birthday dinner out, next week we're due to go on holiday for a couple of weeks with extended family. Will I even get to go or will they insist I stay behind? If they do that, I'll just know that something really bad is suspected. If I go, will I be able to be normal without arousing any suspicion?
Aaagh, head's in a mess!!!!
Get through the day however you need to. It's likely to be a really shit time. Mine happened quite close to an important holiday and I concentrated on celebrating it in a more mindful way, because I felt it could be potentially the final one with my family. It helped to get me through by making it the best I possibly could.
My head was definitely a total mess though. Do what you need to until you see your GP and you can get some answers.
Husband's birthday dinner done. I really wasn't in the mood, and neither was he, but we thought we'd give it a go anyway. I'm now home and having a bit of time alone. I'll be knackered (and hungover) tomorrow, but I need a bit of quiet time, which I haven't really had since this afternoon's phone calls. I'm going to watch some mindless telly to try and clear my head. I wouldn't sleep right now even if I tried.
Feeling a little calmer since I wrote the messages above. I know that statistics are on my side, but there's always somebody who goes against those stats. I've tried to calmly look at symptoms, and yes, ovarian cancer is possible, but I don't match all of them. And yes, endometriosis is possible, but again, I don't perfectly match that either. At least, whatever it is, I've had my family, I'm done with babies, so they can take any of those bits away if necessary!
I'm just going to try and relax a little before next Thursday when I have the GP appointment. My GP surgery are very good. I've had several completely useless ones, so maybe mine being efficient and useful is panicking me needlessly because it's so different to what I expect!
I had a similar scare last year, I'm also 40 with a young child. It was one the most terrifying time of my life. It was even more so horrible because they found this unusual cyst on my ovary after my miscarriage. So I was pregnant and happy one minute, then cancer scare and planning my funeral the next
It wasn't malignant in the end, but thinking back I have no idea how I made it through.
Did they take some bloods to check CA125 levels? In most NHS trusts, it is their policy to have this tumor marker done as well.
Hope everything is okay x
I'm back. There hasn't been any sort of resolution, but there have been small developments. GP reckons the scans don't show anything sinister. I was referred to a gynaecologist, who won't rule it out. I'm having tumour marker blood tests tomorrow. And then they want to operate on whatever it is within a couple of weeks. I've been referred to a private hospital, so they're able to move quickly, which I suppose is good. Regardless of whether it's just a cyst or something worse, I will have to have some sort of surgery, they want to get it out.
So after being reassured by the GP, I'm back panicking. But not as bad a as before. I'm trying to see it as, if there is something awful wrong, it's better to know now. I'm not an obvious candidate for ovarian cancer, and I'm trying to hold on to that thought too, although, of course, there are always exceptions.
So a bit of a handhold is still needed. DH knows. I've told my manager the bare bones of it, same with a friend.
Slinkenconken I'm sorry about this, I quite understand how scary it is. Did they give you the impression that you would know before the surgery how much they would need to remove? Because having a cyst out would be very different from, say, a hysterectomy. Tumour markers are not very reliable, I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in May but didn't have markers. I hope your condition is fairly minor. Do update. If it is cancer, the long-running support thread in this topic is great.
Good luck, really hope it turns out fine. I have a ‘chocolate’ cyst on ovary / hopefully you have something similar.
Bloodybridget they've said that if it is just a cyst they will do a laparoscopy and remove it. If there's a suspicion it could be cancerous, they will remove the whole ovary. Other ovary is completely clear. Sorry to hear what you're going through, I hope you're doing ok.
for you OP
I have endometriosis, and my mum had ovarian cancer. I can tell you that your symptoms were incredibly similar. It’s also very difficult to differentiate clinically because the CA-125 blood test that’s raised when ovarian cancer is present can also be raised due to endometriosis, and other things.
Have you had a CT scan? They sent my mum for one very quickly after her CA-125 levels came back extremely high.
I can tell you that, in my 15 years in endo support groups / boards, I’ve spoken to countless women who got to your age, had multiple children and had no idea anything was wrong until they got a cyst or needed surgery for something else. Endometriosis symptoms vary greatly from person to person - I have pain every day, some women only have pain during periods of ovulation, some women have no pain at all. Some have extremely long periods, others very short. The huge variation in symptoms and the fact it can’t be diagnosed without surgery is why it takes so long to diagnose. A chocolate cyst seen on a scan is one of the few ways it’s picked up without surgery.
It’s overwhelmingly more likely to be endometriosis than anything else and I’ll cross my fingers for you that it is. When are things happening?
Sending you a handhold lass.
I'm so pleased they're getting to the bottom of it so quickly.
I’ve been where you are now and it’s scary. But as in a majority of cases mine was just a cyst and was easily removed and my symptoms disappeared overnight.
I really think doctors are so used to running these blood tests that they breezily say oh yes we’ll test for tumour markers bla bla bla like it’s an everyday thing and forget that it’s like a punch in the chest to patients sometimes. I had a letter from the gynae a few days before xmas saying she’d reviewed my scans and wanted to run the tumour markers again as she disagreed with the initial diagnosis of the location of the cyst. This totally ruined xmas for me as my mind went into panic mode.
Sounds like you’re being dealt with swiftly so at least there’s not too long to wait.
Hi. I have endo. First diagnosed in my mid twenties when I had an 8cm cyst on one ovary. I did have painful periods and sex became painful (which is why i was referred in the end) but I was most likely walking round happily for years not realising. Gynae was amazed how relatively little pain i was in! Was easily removed with laparoscopy. Fingers crossed for you xx
Looking at symptoms, endometriosis does match more than cancer, so I hope that it might be that. Although that's no disrespect to anyone who suffers from endometriosis, I just desperately don't want it to be cancer.
They said if they wanted to act more quickly that I'd be contacted within a week. So if I get to the end of next Thursday without a phone call, that's good.
Slinkenconken the plan for surgery sounds good and I really hope it's just a benign cyst that can be whipped out easily. Thanks for your good wishes, it is tough going through this but I have great support and health care.
Thanks for all the kind comments. I'm going to try and relax for the next few days. It's kind of all out of my hands for the moment, tests have been done, so I just wait for the next step. And there will definitely be a next step, and it'll be soon, so at least I'm not waiting around for too long. Something is going to be done, and that something will help me, regardless of what the diagnosis is. I'll check in again once I know more. In the meantime, I'm going to make the most of the last few days of the summer holidays.
We'll be thinking of you lass and sending handholds.
Well, nothing has been removed yet. Blood tests for tumour markers came back clear, so it's looking like this is nothing too serious, although I'm not quite relaxing yet. They're planning a straightforward cyst removal, and fingers crossed they don't find anything worrying when they get in there. The plan is to do the op next week. I'm a little nervous, but just want it over with now.
As I say, I'm not relaxing just yet, but things are looking better than they were a few weeks ago. I just hope things stay looking good. I will be so relieved when it's all done.
Best of luck this waiting must be so frustrating. Hope it gets sorted very soon.
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