1st check up worries

Hi again ladies,

I am due to go for my first check up since my treatment finished on 2nd Oct. I go on Friday and am a nervous wreck! What I wanted to ask is this: Will I get into trouble as I have not been able to bring myself to use my dilators? I am scared now that my examination will hurt. Also learned from my nurse that my oncologist will examine my back passage too? This is actually making me feel so anxious. As well as the fact that I will find out if my treatment has worked or not. Do u think I should try these dilators before Fri or will it not make a difference now? Any advice appreciated. And if you have any ideas on how to keep calm! Lol. x

Hi Kim,

I’m at a different stage of the game to you, but I wanted to respond quickly re rectal examination (have had a few of those). No, it’s not my ideal way to spend an afternoon, but it’s not so bad compared to all the other stuff we’ve been through.

I think you should tell them that you haven’t been able to get on with the dilators before you start so they know to be gentle with you. They won’t tell you off, they are there to help you and if they know you’ve struggled, your nurse might be able to give you some extra help or advice.

What I do know that with all this stuff, the more you can relax, the easier it will be - whenever I have anything done that I don’t fancy I try to close my eyes, try to make my breathing regular and slow and imagine myself somewhere else. My particular favourite is imagining myself liyng on a tropical beach, looking up at the blue sky through palm trees. Sometimes I invite George Clooney along too :wink:

Best of luck Kim, you can do this. xxx

Hi Kim!
I must be at a similar stage in treatment as I had my 1st check up last week and getting my 3 month MRI and Cat scans next week. My check up was nervewracking, but nothing compared to what I’ve been through. I didn’t get the rectal exam though - just a internal examination which did set off some bleeding but apparently that is completely normal. Let them know about the dialators, I had real trouble with them at the start, but the more you use them the easier and less daunting it is. You should try and use them as if you don’t - you could close up and it’s impossible to reopen (apparently) I agree with Rambling Rosehip - the more you relax, the easier it is.
Best of luck, you totally got this one!!

the reason they ask you to use the dilator is, after radiation the tissues of your vagina can become sticky, and therfore one side can stick to the other and weld together, so to speak. i used the dilator, and after 6 months my consultant said i could stop using it. my macmillan nurse frowned but said nothing lol. after 3 weeks i thought ill just test to see if everything is ok and shock horror about half an inch inside the vagina i had fused together!! so i pushed and pushed and broke through with some small bleeding, needless to say i have used the dilator since! however i also use replens regularly which keeps the tissues moist and avoids sticking.

so if you are ok at your examination i would advise using replens 3 times a week to keep your tissues moist, if that works you may get away with not having to use your dilator.

i obviously have tissue damage to a small patch just inside vagina,and the consultant told me this will never repair, so i will continue what i am doing for ever, its no problem i view it the same as cleaning my teeth!

you can get the replens on prescription, it is the best product for our condition. good luck