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Cancer: Uterine Message Board

Cancer: Uterine Board Index

[QUOTE=Momto467;4689795]I haven't had a GYN exam since 2007 and I've been going to the same dr since 1998 so he knows me and my symptoms very well. After my checkup last week, he asked me some questions and got me to admit I've had some changing symptoms that I just want to forget.

I've had Endo all my adult life and dx with Adenomyosis, uterine fibroids & had hundreds of polyps removed in March 2005 at age 37 (I'll be 44 in March) via Laproscopy/D&C. 2 of the polyps were tested - both were negative

Also, when I was in my early 20's, I had pre-cancerous cells removed after a pap test came back abnormal and my previous gyn burned an area of tissue after doing a biopsy (cone biopsy? I think). I can't remember what it was called though and they no longer have the records at that office.

I have the classic symptoms of Endometrial cancer; but it's probably due to my Adenomyosis - Abnormal vaginal bleeding, spotting, or discharge; Pain during sex; Pain in the pelvic area and my endometrial stripe was 8mm last they checked after surgery.

"The most common symptom of uterine cancer is abnormal vaginal bleeding. It may start as a watery, blood-streaked flow that gradually contains more blood." It seems this symptom has my dr concerned and he thinks I have a high possibility of Endometrial cancer, after doing a checkup & exam and finding out I've had this symptom about a year.

My mother died of ovarian cancer at age 52, which she developed after breast cancer at 38; but I had a BRACA test and it said I had 0% chance for both breast & ovarian cancer thankfully.

I'm sure I'm just worried for no reason; I have so many other health issues that I'm dealing with that this just piled on made me stress completely.

But I found this and it has me concerned with my symptoms: "Endometrial thickening can be benign and caused by low levels of estrogen and a lack of progesterone as you transition into menopause. Estrogen builds up the lining and no more progesterone prevents it from leveling off and shedding. Even if there is abnormal endometrial thickening, it takes about 10 years for it to turn into cancer." I wonder how true this is?

I forgot; I can't have a hysterectomy because of malignant heart problems; my dr said there is no way he would do it and chance my heart stopping again :( so what choices do I have if it's confirmed this week with testing?[/QUOTE]

Well... an 8mm endometrial stripe is not very thick at all, actually.
I recently had a 20 mm endo stripe (2 cms!)
They did a D&C, and found no sign of cancer, or even hyperplasia (which can be a precursor to cancer). My thick stripe was normal, apparently.
If you're post-menopausal, an 8 mm endo stripe could warrant further investigation (but even so, it doesn't necessarily mean that you have cancer, it could just mean that you have excess estrogen coming from somewhere; hrt or obesity could account for an 8 mm endo stripe in a post-menopausal woman).

If you're premenopausal (I assume you are, because of your age), that stripe means absolutely nothing. It's well within normal range. It could be twice that thick, and still be within normal range, and- as my case illustrates- even if it were [I]extremely[/I] thick and beyond what's considered "normal range", it doesn't necessarily mean anything is wrong (although it does warrant further investigation to make sure).

I think your bleeding and symptoms could very well come from the other, benign uterine conditions you mention you've suffered from in the past.
The bleeding could also be caused by endometrial polyps, endometrial hyperplasia, or a uterine infection, all of which can usually be corrected easily, once it's diagnosed.
You've had polyps before; they tend to recur. They can cause the bleeding you describe. You probably have them again, and need another D&C and polypectomy. They were benign before; they'll no doubt be benign again.

You should be aware that endometrial cancer is quite rare before menopause.
When it does occur at a younger age (such as 44), often it occurs in women who are obese, who are childless, who suffer from PCOS, and who have had abnormal periods for decades.

I'm not saying you couldn't have cancer- there are exceptions to every rule- I'm just saying I think other possibilities are more likely in your case.
Your endo stripe measurement is normal. 8 mm is not "thickened", and even if it were, a thick endometrial lining doesn't mean much in a woman who still menstruates.

So definitely press on until you get your diagnosis, but don't resign yourself to having uterine cancer just yet. I suspect it's something far less serious.

If- worst case scenario- it [I]is[/I] endometrial cancer, it's highly treatable.
It's considered one of the easiest cancers to beat.

But, as the saying goes, when you hear hoofbeats, think horses, not zebras.
You've had benign endometrial polyps in the past. They are very common, and they are notorious for recurring. They cause the exact symptoms you're describing (the spotting/bleeding).
If I were you, I'd be optimistic and assume the polyps are back, not assume that it's cancer this time (considering how [I]rare[/I] endo cancer is at your age).

Good luck!
Please let us know what you find out.

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