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Surgery for recurrant Ovarian Cancer

I am facing surgery after a 2 1/2 year remission. I will be following the surgery with Carbo/Taxol.  I have read that the second surgery is usually not as effective in eliminating disease and may not be in the patient's best interest.  My doctor told me that my remission time would not be as long.  Most people I have talked to have had only chemo following recurrance.  I would really like to hear from those of you who have gone through a second surgery.  How are you doing?  I am stage 3c grade 3.   Thanks much. Terri
5 Responses
135691 tn?1271097123
Hi Terri...
I too, wanted to have a second surgery after my first recurrence, but was told that's not usually standard procedure. My doc explained that because everything that could be taken the first time, was taken (ie: uterus, ovaries, cervix etc...) that the tumors are now attached to things that aren't as readily expendable. I was also told I'd be at a high risk for a colostomy. The reason I wanted surgery was because although I too, was stage 3c, my tumors are a grade one and don't respond to chemotherapy as well as a grade 3 tumor would. I met 3 surgeons (a gyne, a urological and a GI surgeon) and they all agreed that I was not a suitable candidate for surgery...I was very upset about this, of course. I guess their argument was my quality of life. I am 29 and they didn't want to see me end up with a colostomy or worse and felt that the surgery wouldn't be of great benefit to me, as it would most likely recurr anyway.
I wish you luck with everything...please keep us updated on how you make out,
Becky
272338 tn?1252280404
I questioned my onc about surgery when more cancer was found in my abdominal lining. He said that surgery was just not the best option as he didn't think there would be much benfit from it. He went on to explain that since surgery takes so much out of you, he would rather keep my strength and stick with the chemo. (just a side note: at the first visit to my gyn/onc he also told me that he did not think that doing surgery would be of much benefit to me. When I went back for my 6 week check up, he came in with a student Dr and was explaining my case to him. When he got to the surgery he looked at me and said, "I guess that I was wrong about that")
As for now, there are no tumors anywhere that are causing me any problems so ww will just continue with chemo.
  I hope that your surgery and following chemo will work that wonder for you.
    Chris
Avatar universal
My mother (staged 3c), age 63 at the time,  had surgery after a six-week remission. The CT scan showed masses that were large enough (and not invasive to GI tract) that made them good candidates for removal via surgery. The surgeon was able to remove almost all of the visible cancer and then doxil kept her stable for the next 9 months before her CA-125 started to rise again  

I will be keeping my fingers crossed for you. Best wishes.
Avatar universal
Hi Terri.... second, and sometimes third surgeries, are an individual decision, depending on where the tumours are located, and if they are indeed solid tumours that can be taken. In my case, and probably others as well, my cancer is like grains of rice, sprinkled around my pelvic area. I did discuss with my surgeon the possibility of further surgery, but his opinion was, that it would only be putting me through a lot of unnecessary trauma for little gain. As he explained, one little 'grain' would be all that would be needed for the cancer to start up again, and we would be looking at the same problems a little further down the track. If you have solid tumours, that the Surgeon can safely remove, without jeopardising your health, then maybe it's worth a thought.
Wishing you all the best with whatever decision you make...hugs...Helen...
306594 tn?1443387857
Hi Terri

My mother had a second surgery after a 2 year remission, she is stage 4 and 68 years old. Although the surgeon was able to cut out more cancer she was still left with some cancer cells that he couldn't get so she had to go back on chemo again, she is due to finish the chemo next month and so far her ca125 is 8.

I know she really pushed for the surgery when her ca125 started to rise and after some hot spots were identified from the PET scan the surgeon felt more optimistic, so she feels happier that she tried anyway. The doctor never said anything about a shorter remission time.

She never had massive high readings for ca125 even when she was initially diagnosed back in 2005, I think it was around 200.
You can only be guided by your oncologist and CT results, and if you are feeling physically and mentally up to it.

Best wishes and I really hope it is successful for you.  
kind regards..... Carolyn
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