Cancer can be a scary subject. We’re here to help.
No single page on the internet or in a book can tell you all there is to know about gynecologic cancer, or any other form of cancer for that matter. Most people hear the word “cancer” and associate it with certainty of death in the very near future. But this really is not the case.
Cancer research and modern medicine have advanced greatly over the last four decades. During the 1970s, about one of two people diagnosed with cancer survived at least five years after diagnosis. Now, more than two of three survive that long. Today there are more than 12 million cancer survivors in the United States alone.
Still, the word “cancer” is a scary one. Gynecological cancer or cancer of the reproductive system, includes cancer of the ovaries, uterus, cervix, vagina, and breasts. At your annual gynecological exam, we look for any signs of cancer in these areas. Additionally, we instruct you in breast self-exam techniques that should be done monthly. Early detection increases the likelihood of living a long life.
Should gynecologic cancer be detected, we will be here to help guide you so that you undergo the best care possible, as soon as possible, in order to maximize your outcomes. Many specialists are involved in the treatment of cancer.
Dealing with a Cancer Diagnosis
You are going to feel overwhelmed, and that is okay and expected. As you move forward to doctor appointments in order to begin treatments, we recommend that you always take a friend or relative. Each of you will pick up on instructions or things said that the other may not. Having a support system is important during this time. Be kind to yourself, cut yourself some slack, and do not expect to be functioning at one hundred percent, as usual.
Your friends and relatives will be affected by your cancer diagnosis as well, so they may not be functioning at one hundred percent either. We have found that the more you live with your diagnosis and embrace it, the easier it will be to say the word “cancer” and continue living.
Life does not stop just because someone gets a cancer diagnosis. The bills keep coming. The family wants dinner. The laundry still needs folding. The kids need “mom time.” Know that it is okay to ask for help. You may find yourself avoiding time with friends and family as a way of avoiding conversations about your diagnosis and treatment. We encourage you to lean into those individuals in your life and share with them, because when you share your burden with others, the load lessens for you personally.
At any point in your journey you find yourself lost, confused, scared, or unsure, we want you to feel free to call our office. As our patient, we not only care about the physical you, but about the emotional you as well. Our patients are why we do what we do, and we are here for you. Working together with you and your specialists, we look forward to being able to declare you “cancer free” and sharing again in your joy.
Early detection is key to achieving best outcomes when it comes to cancer. If you have not seen us for your annual well-woman exam, pick up the phone now or schedule an appointment online.