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Chemo or Surgery/Recurrence
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Chemo or Surgery/Recurrence

Stage II, had hysterectomy and 10cm. tumor removed, had a rough time after surgery, carbo/taxol 6 mo. then CA125 at 7. Same symptoms came back in May, 8 months after chemo, and thus recurrence with 6c.tumor pressing on colon. Started carbo/taxol, had two and was to have 3rd Fri. CA 125 had gone up to 265 from 120 three weeks ago. Had CT Scan and Chest X-Ray and I see the Dr. Tues. If I have a choice should I have surgery debulking or new chemo? I know this is an individual choice, but some of you have done this and may know the odds. Do you go through the surgery and it just comes back just as quickly? Last go round my stiches did not heal underneath the skin and it popped open and I had months of stuffing the incision daily. I am very down now from the cancer and chemo and not out of bed or leaving the house much. I just don't know what to do and maybe I won't have a choice, but if I do, I want facts from you guys on what you have gone through or heard from others. Thanks for your support.
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8 Comments
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792410_tn?1270319100
If the doctor says surgery is the best option for you, if I were you, I would go for it.  I would want the tumor out ASAP.  Since the tumor is in one isolated spot, maybe a laparoscopy would be an option and then you wouldn't have the incision concern.
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135691_tn?1271100723
I have to agree, if my doctors would offer me surgery, I'd jump at the chance. I've been trying for 3 years to get someone to do a second surgery on me!  It's not normally how they treat this disease, but like I said, if you have the opportunity, I don't know that I would pass it up.
I guess it's easy for me to say that though because I recovered well after my initial surgery - I didn't have many of the complications you seemed to have gone through, so I can undertand your reluctance.
Sorry this doesn't help you very much - it's a big decision though and I guess all you can do is weigh all of your options...
Becky
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349465_tn?1289085364
My OVCA situation is similiar to yours. A tumor showed up two months after I finished my initial chemo.  Therefore, they again did surgery. It was no fun. I ended up in the hospital for 35 days for various problems including hospital infections and a blockage. The blockage required additional surgery.  So in the matter of a year, I had three surgeries.
After the last surgery, I was put on Doxil which has also not been fun.
I find out in a week the status of it's success.

I see no reason for you go go BACK on the initial chemos. They did not work. Carbo/taxol proved not to be effective in your case. Going right back on the same combination does not make sense to me.

I would do whatever the doctor suggests as far as the surgery goes,  if it were me.
Teresa
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408448_tn?1286887421
I agree with Teresa that the carbo/taxol was the wrong way to go since it did not work as a first line treatment.  I would opt for surgery to get the tumor out, then try another chemo.  I am going for sugery myself on the 27th.  Chemo doesn't work for me since I have grade 1 tumors.  I wish you the best.  Marie
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272338_tn?1252284004
I am going out on a limb here but I am thinking that your Dr will not want to do another surgery just yet. Starting you back on carbo/taxol was something I also question. My guess is that your Dr will want to start you on a different chemo and see how the mass responds to it. Sometimes that is all it takes and chemo is easier on you than another major surgery so soon. My Dr refuses another surgery as he wants me to keep my strength for the chemo. But I do wish you luck whichever route your Dr takes.
          Chris
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Avatar_f_tn
hi Conners,

my mum is stage 2 as well... i'm sorry to hear that you are fighting a recurrence now... here's some info that i hope will help:

according to info from medical journals on the internet, patients on platinum drugs whose disease recurs after six mths will not be given the same drug again as it probably did not work...

on the other hand, patients with more than 12 mths between end of chemo and recurrence will be given the same chemo drugs.

your 8 mths lies in between the two options... thus it can be debated and different doctors will manage it differently. however, some doctors prefer to use a different drug before going back to carbo/taxol again so as to stretch the time in between your first carbo/taxol cycle (when you were first diagnosed) and your next one.

since your CA-125 is going up, i suggest you discuss this seriously with your onco... ask him/her to reconsider the chemo regime in light of the fact that any step that he/she takes now is going to have an impact on your future treatment options.

if you are still relatively well with slight symptoms, surgery can be an option... but do discuss this in detail with your gynae onco... now that you have started chemo again, surgery might entail more risks for you, so choose wisely...

all the best. stay strong.
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You have gotten such wonderful, informed advice I can't add anything except good luck with your new attack on the cancer!
Jane
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Thank you all. You were so helpful. Conners
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