AshleyLouise's Journey with Cervical Cancer

Survivor: Cervical Cancer

Patient Info: Finished active treatment less than 5 years ago, Diagnosed: almost 6 years ago, Female, Age: 31, Stage IIIB

  1. 1
    over 4 years ago
    AshleyLouise's Avatar

    Diagnosed

    Oh No

    I had been having abnormal bleeding for a few weeks, and had gotten in to see my primary physician. During a pap smear, the bleeding became severe, and I was sent to the ER. Their findings prompted an immediate visit to a gynecologist, who called me on December 12, 2011, right before I was ready to go to work, and told me I had cancer.

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  2. 2
    over 4 years ago
    AshleyLouise's Avatar

    External radiation

    Radiation

    I was never in physical pain from the radiation, but SO TIRED. I had it every day for five weeks, and could barely make it up the stairs to my third floor apartment, by the end of the second week.

    Painless Experience: Agree
    Minimal Side Effects: Strongly Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Strongly Disagree
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  3. 3
    over 4 years ago
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    Internal radiation (Brachytherapy)

    Radiation

    I had to lie there, motionless, for roughly 40 hours, two separate times. The first time, I threw up all over myself in the middle of the night, and couldn't move while the nurses tried to clean me up. Awful. But, I also got to use one of the days as a day of prayer--collected prayer requests from everyone I could. That was a great experience.

    Painless Experience: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree
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  4. 4
    over 4 years ago
    AshleyLouise's Avatar

    Chemotherapy

    Drug or Chemo Therapy

    I was pretty immediately started on 6 weeks of chemotherapy and radiation concurrently. I spent about 8-10 hours getting cisplatin, once per week. How fun is that lasix, and peeing every 10 minutes?

    Easy to Do: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Side Effects: Disagree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree
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  5. 5
    over 4 years ago
    AshleyLouise's Avatar

    Finished treatment

    Celebration

    I had a set of scans, and was pronounced free of cancer! Also! I met my now-boyfriend for the first time-- we had met on a blog, and then started talking on Twitter, then Facebook, then the phone, then in St. Louis! Now we've been dating for 6 months, and I am so in love with that man.

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  6. 6
    over 4 years ago
    AshleyLouise's Avatar

    Pain

    Side Effects

    Started having severe stomach pain! Turns out my bowels were obstructed by some scar tissue from the radiation.

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  7. 7
    over 4 years ago
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    Surgery

    Procedure or Surgery

    Bowel resectioning! That tube they put through your nose-- NOT OKAY. Also then my wound got infected, and I ended up with a wound vac for weeks. The dressings are so painful to have changed, three times per week. But I made it! And I had a lot of fun messing with the nurses while I was stuck in the hospital for three and a half weeks.

    Went as Expected: Agree
    Minimal Recovery: Disagree
    Minimal Side Effects: Agree
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Disagree
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  8. 8
    over 4 years ago
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    Remission

    Celebration

    Bowel surgery was done, and scans were showing NO cancer! Huzzah!

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  9. 9
    over 4 years ago
    AshleyLouise's Avatar

    Cancer is back/Recurred

    Oh No

    I went up to Mayo for a second opinion, expecting to get a clean bill of health. Instead, they told me I had two new and aggressively growing tumors. It turns out they were wrong, the red on the PET was caused by other things, but they did find out that my left kidney had died. Womp womp.

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  10. 10
    over 4 years ago
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    Long-term catheter

    Procedure or Surgery

    I haven't had this surgery yet. It is scheduled for a month. I am not happy about it. The idea of having a stoma, and having to catheterize myself several times a day frankly sucks. But I believe that God still has good for my life, and I can live that out regardless of what is happening to my body. Can I get an amen?

    Went as Expected: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Recovery: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Side Effects: Neutral/NA
    Minimal Impact to Daily Life: Neutral/NA
    1 Comment
  11. 11
    over 4 years ago
    AshleyLouise's Avatar

    Remission

    Celebration

    I am celebrating the success of this last surgery, and my forever-remission, in advance. Because I can. Because why not? This all sucks too much to not be happy when you can.

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