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40ish and beyond... 40ish and beyond...

January is cervical cancer awareness month- I am a survivor

Posted by on Jan. 16, 2013 at 11:21 PM
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As most of you know, I am a cervical cancer survivor, and I just got my results of my 5 year pap smear check up. Still cancer free! My story is in a journal post on my profile page, if you'd like background info. In short, I never thought cancer could happen to me, and hardly ever got pap smears. It was during my first pregnancy that I got my first abnormal test. Still, I was surprised when I got the diagnosis that it had turned cancerous, but I was lucky to be in stage one. The chances of a cure, with a radical hysterectomy, was 90 %. I am so grateful to have had 2 babies in less than a year and then had my hysterectomy right after. Truly a blessing to be around to raise them.

The problem with this cancer, is that by the time most women are diagnosed, it has spread to other organs, because the symptoms are so vague, or nonexistent, until then. 10,000 women per year die from this curable disease. YOU ARE NOT IMMUNE.

Please get your pap smear done yearly!

Pick up the phone and make that appointment!

In memory of those women lost to this insidious cancer

blue ribbon

 

Dawn
by on Jan. 16, 2013 at 11:21 PM
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Replies (1-10):
Mariagma3
by Wild Midwest Lady on Jan. 16, 2013 at 11:50 PM

 Thank you for posting this! Great topic!

goins1119
by Bronze sister on Jan. 17, 2013 at 12:11 AM
Thank you for sharing.
ashleighmama
by Ash on Jan. 17, 2013 at 12:50 AM
Awesome that your test results show 5 years cancer free! As a cervical cancer survivor, I have an important question to ask you, have you heard that now drs say if you are monogamous and test negative for the HPV virus then you only need to get a pap every 3 years now? There may be some other criteria for it too, I cant remember. Anyway, I fall into that category. I thought it strange when my dr explained all this to me, then kinda recently I heard them talking about it on the news, those are now the guidelines. What do you think about this? I HATE pap tests, but I believe in better safe than sorry. I would almost rather get 1 every year just to be sure, but ins. wont pay for it. All 4 of my grandparents died from some form of cancer, though not breast or cervical. Just interested in your opinion.
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BL2010
by Just Me on Jan. 17, 2013 at 7:36 AM

Thanks for this great information. So glad to hear that you've had 5 years of good paps!

starlight1968
by 40ish hang out queen on Jan. 17, 2013 at 9:53 AM

 My dd's dr. told her that too but added "UNLESS you have cancer in your family-then do it yearly"

To OP- sooo glad you are still 'all clear' and thank you for the reminder!!

Quoting ashleighmama:

Awesome that your test results show 5 years cancer free! As a cervical cancer survivor, I have an important question to ask you, have you heard that now drs say if you are monogamous and test negative for the HPV virus then you only need to get a pap every 3 years now? There may be some other criteria for it too, I cant remember. Anyway, I fall into that category. I thought it strange when my dr explained all this to me, then kinda recently I heard them talking about it on the news, those are now the guidelines. What do you think about this? I HATE pap tests, but I believe in better safe than sorry. I would almost rather get 1 every year just to be sure, but ins. wont pay for it. All 4 of my grandparents died from some form of cancer, though not breast or cervical. Just interested in your opinion.

 

LFosterfarm
by on Jan. 17, 2013 at 9:58 AM

 this is a great reminder!!  I"m glad you're cancer free.  I had two scares and still have to get paps every year, I swear I've had more biopsies than you can shake a stick at! 

IndianaWynette
by Sister on Jan. 17, 2013 at 10:23 AM

 She is right..Get regulat smears...4 yrs. after my last child they found mine but it was already class 4 and they said my cervix, uteris and all looked like swiss cheese and I not only had to have a Hystorectomy but radiation treatments (16) and Chemo (22) and you have never been sick till you have chemo and never had a skin burn till you have radiation..I couln't hardly stant to have sheets touching me. Please don't put your exams off like I did.

SeanandNoahsmom
by Manning Fan on Jan. 17, 2013 at 1:51 PM

 IMO, Ashleigh, I would get them yearly, if you have ANY cancer risk in your family. I am in the 30% for whom cervical cancer was NOT caused by HPV. My only risk factor is an aunt who passed away from breast cancer. If my pregnancies hadnt required a pap smear, though, I wouldnt be alive today.

Quoting ashleighmama:

Awesome that your test results show 5 years cancer free! As a cervical cancer survivor, I have an important question to ask you, have you heard that now drs say if you are monogamous and test negative for the HPV virus then you only need to get a pap every 3 years now? There may be some other criteria for it too, I cant remember. Anyway, I fall into that category. I thought it strange when my dr explained all this to me, then kinda recently I heard them talking about it on the news, those are now the guidelines. What do you think about this? I HATE pap tests, but I believe in better safe than sorry. I would almost rather get 1 every year just to be sure, but ins. wont pay for it. All 4 of my grandparents died from some form of cancer, though not breast or cervical. Just interested in your opinion.

 

Dawn
ashleighmama
by Ash on Jan. 17, 2013 at 5:12 PM
Quoting SeanandNoahsmom:


Wow, thank youy very much for sharing your story with me. I'll have to check and see if my ins. will cover it, I have medicare because I'm on disability. I just assumed that ins. wouldn't pay for it since this is the new medical guideline. If not, since there's no way I could pay cash for it, I can probably go to Planned Parenthood. I will look into that. Also it's always been that starting at 40 you get yearly mammograms. I got my 1st a year ago, and my dr also told me that if your 1st one comes back normal, and you have no family history of breast cancer, you don't HAVE to get a yearly test, you can wait anywhere from 5 to 10 years to get another one, unless, of course, you find a lump or something. She said other cancers in the family don't make you higher risk for breast cancer, it has to be female relatives with breast cancer to up your risk.I told her no way, I wasn't waiting that long, and she said you don't HAVE to, just something for me to think about. She said maybe I'd feel better getting my next one in like 3 to 5 years. She said it's because women were getting so freaked out if the test showed something, then ended up being negative,I don't know, something like that, it was like hurting some womens mental health by causing so much stress. she didn't say that ins. won't pay for a yearly one though. I personally prefer to get one every year, my mammogram didn't hurt AT ALL. But with all this medical reform crap I wonder if ins. will continue to pay for it yearly. have you ever heard about what I just described to you, not getting one yearly?
Ashleigh
rojastarr
by Fang Slayer on Jan. 17, 2013 at 5:21 PM

Thank you for sharing your story ... getting regular paps and mammograms can save your life.

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