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Topic: colonoscopy to "rule out underlying malignancy"

Forum: Not Diagnosed With a Recurrence or Metastases but Concerned —

Meet others concerned about developing a recurrence or metastases.

Posted on: May 21, 2018 08:22PM

wrenn wrote:

I was recently in ER for pain and fever and had a CT Scan which diagnosed diverticulitis. I have been taking antibiotics for over a week and still have pain but it is not as bad. My GP called to say the radiologist recommends a colonoscopy to rule out an underlying malignancy. I am wondering if anyone else had had this happen. Colon seems like an unusual place for mets so I am hoping this is just a precaution since they knew I had an aggressive cancer? Any similar experiences?

Metaplastic IDC Triple negative...Tumour is 1.5cm. BMX Aug. 16th. Chemo cancelled after one dose due to complications. Dx 7/25/2013, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/6 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Surgery 8/16/2013 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left, Right
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May 21, 2018 08:34PM Meg101 wrote:

I have seen threads here on BCO where members have mentioned colonoscopies and colon cancer. Go back to the main page and click on "Search", then type in "colon" or "colon cancer" and see what pops up. As I recall, someone else inquired if there is a relationship between breast cancer and colon cancer. Meg


Dx 7/14/2017, IDC, Left, 3cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 3/23 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/11/2017 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary Chemotherapy 9/18/2017 AC + T (Taxotere) Radiation Therapy Whole-breast: Breast, Chest wall Targeted Therapy Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole)
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May 21, 2018 09:58PM Egads007 wrote:

Within 6 months of completing treatments I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis. My MO immediately sent me for a colonoscopy, and recommend a regular schedule of colonoscopies as a precautionary measure. My cancer was originally diagnosed as TN, but Ijust made it to ER+ at 15%. The MO didn’t mention mets to the colon at the time, just precautionary. So far, so good and am in remission. I think the combination of chemo and use of NSAIDs for shoulder problems basically wiped out my gut flora.

"I base all my fashion choices on what doesn't itch" (Gilda Radner) Chemotherapy 3/20/2013 Doxil (doxorubicin), Taxol (paclitaxel) Surgery 8/23/2013 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Right Radiation Therapy 11/1/2013 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes Dx IDC, 4cm, Stage IIB, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR- Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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May 21, 2018 10:44PM MelissaDallas wrote:

Wrenn, some of the genetic tests they did on me were CHEK2 & PTEN because of my ovarian cancer & dad's mom & sister having colon cancer, but I'm thinking yours is just a precaution. Sorry you've felt poorly. I hear diverticulitis hurts. I think the thread Meg remembers is a CHEK2 thread about increased colon cancer risk

LCIS, extensive sclerosing adenosis, TAH/BSO & partial omentectomy for mucinous borderline ovarian tumor.
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May 21, 2018 11:09PM - edited May 21, 2018 11:24PM by wrenn

Thank you all. I loved the recommendation from Meg. I had no idea where to start. I feel relieved already knowing it was most likely a precaution. I wonder if I will ever not go to the dark place and just have a regular common diseases.

I was cut off chemo because taxotere caused diverticulitis and have not had it since then but digestion has been shitty since then and getting worse so of course the symptoms made me think "must be cancer".

I am also curious about the genetic stuff since metaplastic is unusual and although I am BRCA negative I always wonder about other genes. I am positive for the APOE4 for alzheimers which could explain me not figuring out how to search for the colon stuff.

Melissa, It does hurt but not really worse than really bad gas pains. The fever is when I know it is not gas. :-)

I am much luckier than most but just thought I would check here since there is endless info and generosity of sharing it.

Off to search CHEK2. Thank you again.

Edited to add that Color Genomics tests both CHEK2 and PTEN. Just ordered it.


Metaplastic IDC Triple negative...Tumour is 1.5cm. BMX Aug. 16th. Chemo cancelled after one dose due to complications. Dx 7/25/2013, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/6 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Surgery 8/16/2013 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left, Right
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May 22, 2018 12:42AM - edited Jun 10, 2018 10:08PM by Luckynumber47

My experience was well before I was ever diagnosed with BC - I had the pain, pcp thought it might be diverticulitis so he sent me to a gastro guy for a colonoscopy but before my appt I took cipro, which cured the infection (although the pain lingered for a month). Anyway, the gastro guy said the colonoscopy showed I had Crohns. Well, I don't have Crohns. I think the Cipro irritated that part of my intestine and it showed up looking like Crohns. The gastro guy put it in my chart that I was in denial, but, hey, it's been 10 years and no Crohns symptoms so far so I'm guessing I was right.

Anyway, that was my long, rambling way of saying that the pain can linger and be careful with what they tell you after your colonoscopy. Sometimes they overlook the simple stuff. Hope everything turns out fine.

Lucky.

(edited to correct spelling)

My avatar is a Blue Footed Boobie. Cracked me up. Dx 2/15/2016, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 3/16/2016, DCIS, Right, <1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR- Surgery 4/5/2016 Mastectomy: Left, Right Hormonal Therapy 5/16/2016 Femara (letrozole)
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May 22, 2018 01:38AM wrenn wrote:

Thanks lucky number. I refused cipro because it makes neuropathy worse and the FDA has warnings about it. I worried that amoxi clav might not be working so good to hear that it doesn’t always go away right away. I can’t remember how it was last time. My one dose of chemo really did a number on my digestion.

I will ask lots of questions about the colonoscopy. Thanks for your input. It all helps

Metaplastic IDC Triple negative...Tumour is 1.5cm. BMX Aug. 16th. Chemo cancelled after one dose due to complications. Dx 7/25/2013, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/6 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Surgery 8/16/2013 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left, Right
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May 22, 2018 11:04AM mustlovepoodles wrote:

I have been told that Chek2 and PALB2 gene mutations increase the risk of colon cancer at least 2-3 times average. I have both--lucky me.

I had terrible diarrhea and a abdominal pain for over a year after I finished chemo. My GI doctor sudpected colitis, caused by chemo. He put me on Welchol, an old drug used for cholesterol, whose main side effect is constipation.

So, my last colonoscopy revealed new polyps. They were benign, but as colon cancer runs rampant in my family I will be getting colonoscopies every 3-5 years. Yay.

Oncotype 23. Positive for PALB2 & Chek2 gene mutations. My breasts are trying to kill me! Dx 7/20/2015, DCIS/IDC, Right, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery 8/20/2015 Lumpectomy Surgery 9/3/2015 Lumpectomy: Right Chemotherapy 10/19/2015 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Surgery 2/4/2016 Prophylactic mastectomy: Left, Right Surgery 10/19/2016 Hormonal Therapy Femara (letrozole) Surgery
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May 25, 2018 11:34AM AliceAgnes wrote:

I just had my first check-up since completing cancer treatments in March 2018. It was with my surgeon, who told me to see my GP about scheduling a colon screening. Although at this time I have no symptoms or complaints, she said that three of her breast cancer patients wound up developing colon cancer later. She recommends a colon screening as a precaution, and I am taking her advice. Last time I ignored a doctor's advice (about annual mammograms) I ended up with breast cancer diagnosed at Stage II.

Dx 3/6/2017, DCIS/IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IIA, 3/20 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Dx 3/6/2017, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 3/20 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (FISH) Targeted Therapy 3/26/2017 Perjeta (pertuzumab) Chemotherapy 3/27/2017 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Targeted Therapy 3/27/2017 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Surgery 8/28/2017 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left Radiation Therapy 10/4/2017 External: Lymph nodes, Chest wall Hormonal Therapy 10/24/2017 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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May 27, 2018 02:36PM - edited May 27, 2018 02:43PM by Sara536

Luckynumber,

If you google, "the patient denies", you will find a long discussion among student doctors about the use of that term in medical records. (On the other hand, if your doctor actually wrote that you were "in denial" that would be another story.)

I copied a couple of excerpts:

A) "I accompanied an elderly parent to a neurologist appointment recently. As this was at a teaching hospital, the first meeting was with a resident who took a complete history and did an examination. When the neurologist came in, the resident verbally reported the results of his history-taking as "The patient reports a sense of imbalance on standing. The patient denies feeling dizzy." etc. As my parent had few symptoms, the list of denials was quite long.

The use of 'denies' has a clear meaning in this medical context ("On being asked about symptom X, the patient said that they did not experience it"), but for the patient it carries unpleasant overtones (accusation, disbelief)."

B) " it also serves as documentation that you actually asked the patient about the symptom or situation that they did not experience.

Here's how it was explained to me:

For example, the first time you get sued for Failure to Diagnose a SAH, and you document "The patient has not had a headache," their attorney will stand up and make a big point about how the patient actually DID have a headache, you just never asked about it. And from your documentation, it admittedly is not clear that you did. You may have simply assumed the patient had not been experiencing a headache.

However, if you write, "The patient denies having a headache," you can successfully argue that, according to your documentation, you did in fact ask if the patient had a headache and they said no.

In addition to the above, it also serves as documentation that you actually asked the patient about the symptom or situation that they did not experience."


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May 27, 2018 11:27PM - edited Jun 10, 2018 10:09PM by Luckynumber47

I never realized there was so much to this denial thing. My PCP read my chart to me and it stated that "patient is in denial". Funny thing is the dr was so certain I had Crohns he ordered a very expensive blood test to try to convince me - only problem was that it came back negative. Sure made him look bad. I ended up losing all faith in dr's after that whole ordeal. I thank my lucky stars every day I found a breast surgeon and MO that I could trust to get me through my BC diagnosis and treatment.

(Edited to correct spelling)

My avatar is a Blue Footed Boobie. Cracked me up. Dx 2/15/2016, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 3/16/2016, DCIS, Right, <1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR- Surgery 4/5/2016 Mastectomy: Left, Right Hormonal Therapy 5/16/2016 Femara (letrozole)
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May 27, 2018 11:49PM Sara536 wrote:

Lucky, I'm so glad you didn't end up being treated for something you didn't have. I'm due for a colonoscopy and I'll be sure to seek a second opinion if the first seems off the mark...in this case, I guess that would be following my gut feeling...

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May 28, 2018 02:46AM Luckynumber47 wrote:

Oh, Sara, so punny- following your gut.... I did a mail in test (color guard?) and skipped colonoscopy this year. Best of luck with yours

My avatar is a Blue Footed Boobie. Cracked me up. Dx 2/15/2016, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 3/16/2016, DCIS, Right, <1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER-/PR- Surgery 4/5/2016 Mastectomy: Left, Right Hormonal Therapy 5/16/2016 Femara (letrozole)
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Jun 10, 2018 05:10PM Positive_spirit wrote:

Hi Wrenn,

Same thing with me. I was in the ER last week and admitted for IV antibiotics for diverticulitis. Have been asked to return for a colonoscopy in 8 weeks when inflammation is down.

How are you doing now? I am still in recovery. My MO said that BC mets rarely go to the colon. Hope you are better.


Dx 1/13/2015, IDC, Stage IA, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 2/10/2015, IDC, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 4/12/2015 AC Dx 12/10/2015, DCIS, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 10, 2018 06:05PM wrenn wrote:

Hi Positive and all. I did the Color Genomics test (very fast) and have no mutations which is a relief. I won't be seeing the gastroenterologist until mid July and then who knows how long to get the colonoscopy booked after that. I am not worried about that now but am nervous about diverticulitis coming back now that I have done more research on cipro. I am wondering if my "neuropathy" is really a side effect of cipro.

I only had one dose of taxotere which can apparently trigger neuropathy but it has been getting worse almost 5 years out and doesn't really feel like numbness and tingling but feels like muscle pain and I can't stand or walk for very long. I looked back at my calendar notes and soon after my first dose of cipro in 2011 (2 years before cancer/chemo) I had bought a cane and had knee xrays wondering what was up with my legs.

The reason I was cut off chemo after first dose was because it caused diverticulitis again and again I was put on cipro. So maybe it wasn't the taxotere causing the leg pain after all. I am having trouble convincing doc that it is the cipro.

I recently bought CBD oil for the pain but haven't had the nerve to try it yet. :-)

Anyway, thank you for all the input. It is so helpful to be able to come here for answers. I hope everyone is doing ok.

Metaplastic IDC Triple negative...Tumour is 1.5cm. BMX Aug. 16th. Chemo cancelled after one dose due to complications. Dx 7/25/2013, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/6 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Surgery 8/16/2013 Lymph node removal: Left, Sentinel, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left, Right
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Jun 10, 2018 09:31PM Shellshell69 wrote:

Hello...I am very nervous I am in process if having a biopsy on my breast the radiologist said he seen AD but the mass us very little 7mm but my gp ordered a colonscopy and I have not done it as of yet my biopsy is tomorrow on my breast...my mother died in 2016 if colo cancer


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