OF CANCER IN WOMEN
A confidential doctor-patient talk is essential for therapy success! Univ. doz. dr. michael medl
Diagnosis; breast cancer – I will provide active support on your way from diagnosis to therapy!
Many women diagnosed with breast cancer feel alone, confused and at a loss. But thanks to progress in medicine, breast cancer therapy is today not only significantly more effective, but also less burdensome for those affected, elevating the chance of recovery. Early detection of the tumor is a must. Breast cancer is, in fact, the most common form of cancer in women, yet four out of five women return back to health. This disease is no longer a death sentence; it is only its overcoming which poses a considerable emotional strain on women.
Breast cancer – you are not alone!
Among the 5000+ women who contract breast cancer every year in Austria (5454 in 2014, Statistik Austria), many cases are increasingly diagnosed in pre- or early stages. Self-examination of the breast as well as mammographs, are essential for the early detection of breast cancer. In this way, benign and malignant abnormalities of the breast can be detected. If in doubt, pain-free ultrasound examinations of the breast and MRT (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) broaden the diagnostic possibilities.
Breast cancer diagnosis – what next?
Cancer begins when a degenerated cell multiplies uncontrollably and replaces the healthy tissue. Breast cancer involves a malignant transformation of the breast tissue. It has many faces, depending on its source, character and phase. Consequently, individual and varied therapy requirements ensue. While a local, confined cancer can be completely removed in a relatively small operative intervention, larger tumors must be extensively operated on.
→ Ovarian carcinoma
Ovarian carcinoma is a malignant disease of the ovaries. It is the third most common cancer of women’s inner genitals, with the worst prognosis. At present a promising early detection, as in the case of cervical cancer or breast cancer, is not possible.
Operative therapy can be performed at an early stage using laparoscopy. In advanced carcinomas, a median laparoscopy (abdominal section) is required. The aim is, on one hand, to get a histological confirmation of the diagnosis, and on the other, to remove the tissue in the most radical way possible. A fertility preserving operation is only possible in the early stages (laparoscopy). In advanced stages the operation involves the removal of the uterus, the fallopian tubes, ovaries, the greater omentum and the lymph nodes. In certain circumstances, it may also be necessary to remove other organs for the most radical tumor resection.
In most cases of ovarian cancer, chemotherapy is required following surgery.
→ Endometrial carcinoma
Endometrial carcinoma is a cancer that emanates from the uterine lining. It mainly affects post-menopausal women. Early symptoms are usually bleeding.
Operative therapy involves at least the removal of the uterus, the fallopian tubes and the ovaries. Depending on the stage and histology, the lymph nodes around the pelvis and abdominal arteries may have to be removed, possibly as well as the connective tissue suspension of the ovaries.
Following the operation, radiation and/or chemotherapy is recommended for advanced stages and/or more malignant tumors.
→ Cervical carcinoma
Cervical carcinoma is usually triggered by infection with HP viruses. Early detection is performed with a PAP and HPV smear, supplemented by the so-called colposcopy, in which the cervix is examined with a magnifying glass.
In operative therapy of the pre- and early stages, a conization is usually sufficient, but in the case of early stages and completed family planning, the removal of the uterus is safer. When breaking into the lymph vessels, the removal of the lymph nodes in the small pelvis is recommended. From advanced stages to stage IIB, the radical removal of the uterus with the removal of the lymph nodes in the small pelvis and along the abdominal artery is recommended. If there is an attack on the lymph nodes and advanced tumors, combined radiation/chemotherapy is the therapy of choice.
For women hoping to conceive, an operation that preserves fertility can be
considered for tumors below 2 cm.