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Clear Annual Check

4 years 4 weeks ago #47400 by Markq
Thanks Everybody. Hearing everybody's good news helps to keep a positive attitude and reminds us everything is not doom and gloom.

Here's an article I came across comparing radiation doses of standard CT scans with other tests and with background radiation.

http://www.radiologyinfo.org/en/safety/?pg=sfty_xray

Depending on which studies you read you will hear different opinions as to the risk of these radiation doses. Some say it's no big deal and others will say we're all going to die of radiation induced cancers. I suspect the truth is somewhere in the middle. It's something to think about and be aware of, but if a CT test is truly needed it should be performed. Like a lot of things in life it should induce a risk VS benefit analysis and thought process. Don't forget there's risk in skipping needed tests as well as in getting too many.

Mike's loss is on my mind as well. You think about him and you wonder if you're making the right call with your own care. All of our cases differ, so our treatments shouldn't all be the same either. Somebody with an invasive tumor might be worried about mets while I'm more concerned with missing a reoccurrence of another non-invasive tumor or missing a new tumor on the kidneys or in the ureters that would allow the cancer to become invasive or metastasize. We just have to make the best call we can at the time and move forward one day at a time. Being an active participant in your care certainly improves your chances for a successful outcome.

47 yo, Ta G3
Diagnosed 11-24-10
BCG induction starting 12/17/10 followed by BCG maintance.
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4 years 4 weeks ago - 4 years 4 weeks ago #47399 by Alan
Mark,

FWIW my URO who studied under Dr. Lamm years ago in San Antonio had me do 2 cycles of 6 BCG treatments and that was it. So, who really knows? Every case is different also. My tumor was small and caught early. His reasoning is there is a risk of a problem with every installation and every cysto as they are invasive including CT scans. I have been free for 6.5 years so I say enjoy our luck/success, one day at a time! Glad you are having success! It is encouraging to all.

DX 5/6/2008 TAG3 papillary tumor .5 CM in size. 2 TURBS followed by 6 instillations of BCG weekly with a second round of 6 after a 6 week wait.
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4 years 4 weeks ago #47398 by CatherineH
Hello Markq... Nice to hear from you and congrats on your recent checkup. And, a huge congrats on being smoke-free for four years!

This year was my sixth abdominal/pelvic CT scan, w/wo contrast so each time I go into the machine at least 3 times. I asked about MRI next time, and he asked what was my biggest concern. I told him distant mets since my bc was invasive (T2a). (The loss of Mike is still very much in my mind even though our diagnoses were different.) He said for that, CT is the best way to go and doing an abdominal/pelvic MRI is a very long and drawn out process. So one more clean scan and we will stop scanning routinely.

Here's wishing all of us many good reports ahead!

Best wishes... Catherine
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TURBT 1/21/10 at age 55
Dx: T2aN0M0 Primary Bladder Adenocarcinoma
Partial Cystectomy 2/25/10
Vanderbilt Medical Center
Nashville, TN

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4 years 4 weeks ago #47396 by Flamenco.
Great news, Catherine and Mark, on the new yearly Schedule! A whole year to enjoy yourselves without the pre cysto niggles!!Wheeehee!!

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4 years 4 weeks ago #47394 by Markq
Good News! I just got an all clear this month as well so we are moving to yearly Cystos. I've has 3 years of BCG treatments as well following Dr. Lamm's protocol so we decided to stop those as well. Be high grade I wasn't sure about stopping the BCG's. My official path report was primarily low grade with high grade focal points. I also have been smoke free for 4 years this month. Taking all this into account we decided to stop the BCG's.

I too worry about the cumulative radiation dose from getting too may CT scans. I had one at diagnosis and one or two more at yearly intervals after that. We decided to do an ultrasound next year at the 5 year mark instead of a CT. That will give a picture of the ureters and kidneys that you don't get with a cysto. This isn't as sensitive as a CT scan, but if anything doesn't look right we can do a CT scan after that. A CT scan is a test you don't want to skip if it's truly needed, but you don't want to get too many of them with questionable indications either.

47 yo, Ta G3
Diagnosed 11-24-10
BCG induction starting 12/17/10 followed by BCG maintance.

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4 years 1 month ago - 4 years 1 month ago #47382 by pemquid
Wonderful news! From my experience, getting used to annual check-ups isn't at all difficult. Due to the type of bladder cancer I had, I only had one initial CT scan prior to my first diagnostic cysto, and have never been recommended to get any since that time.

We are glad you have joined us in the annual check up club.

Ann

Small TA Grade 1, May-06; recur (2 tiny), same, June-08; TURBTs both times. BCG begun July-08, dosage to 1/3rd May-10, completed treatment December-11. All clear since 2008.
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