Frequently Asked Questions About
What is a Gynecologic Oncologist?
A Gynecologic Oncologist is a physician who specializes in malignancies
of the female reproductive tract. The practice is limited to cancers or
pre-malignant conditions, suspected cancers, and difficult or unusual
cases that a referring physician might feel uncomfortable treating.
What type cancers are treated by Gynecologic
Cancers of the Uterus/Endometrium, Cervix, Ovary, Vulva and Vagina.
How are these cancers treated?
Typically, most Gynecologic cancers are treated with surgery (including
advanced laparoscopy), radiation,
chemotherapy or a combination of these methods.
What will happen at my first office visit?
After registering, you will be accompanied to an exam room by one of our
nurses. A detailed history will be taken followed by a physical exam by
one of our physicians. After the exam, you may wish to have your family
members or friends with you during the consultation to discuss your
case. If surgery or further testing is needed, our staff will make the
If surgery is indicated, what will happen on the
day prior to surgery?
Pre-operative testing will be performed if it has not already been completed. This
will be done in UK Hospital. In some situations, you may be asked to
have a bowel prep (cleansing of the bowel) prior to surgery. If this is
necessary, our staff will discuss this with you when scheduling surgery.
You will be instructed to have nothing by mouth after 10:00 p.m. the
night before surgery. You should take a shower the night before or
morning of surgery with anti-bacterial soap and cleanse the surgical
site & abdomen thoroughly.
How long will my surgery last?
Most surgical cases last 1-3 hours. The specifics will be discussed with
you by your physician at the time of your visit.
How long will I be in the hospital following
Your length of stay will depend on the type of surgery that is done. The
usual length of stay is 1-3 days.
What are my restrictions following surgery?
When you are scheduled for surgery, you will be given a surgery booklet
that includes pre-operative and post-operative written instructions.
These will be discussed with you at this time and reviewed with you
again prior to discharge from the hospital. Post-operative instructions
will include appointments, prescriptions, staple removal, hygiene,
activity, diet, exercise, information about possible complications, and
any special information about catheters / drains / tubes / wound care
etc. Any special needs for home nursing care will be evaluated at the
time that you are discharged.
When will I return to see my physician for a
An appointment will be made 4-6 weeks after surgery for your
When can I return to work following surgery?
Most women are able to return to work 2-4 weeks after undergoing surgery.
What complications should I be aware of after
discharge from the hospital?
Chills or fever greater than 101, heavy vaginal bleeding, uncontrollable
nausea / vomiting / diarrhea, or early signs of blood clots (redness,
tenderness, swelling in the legs) are all possible complications and you
should feel free to call us about these if they occur.
If additional treatment is needed for a cancer
diagnosis, when will this be discussed with me?
Your physician may have your final pathology report and discuss it with
you prior to discharge from the hospital. If you are eligible for
clinical trials, your physician will discuss this with you at your
Will I continue to see my primary referring
Yes. Your referring physician will receive follow-up reports following
your surgery and during any treatments so that we can keep up with your
progress. Our physicians will keep in contact with your primary
physician and at some point refer you back to them for continuing
If you would like to schedule an appointment for the free Ovarian
Cancer Screening Program, please call 1-800-766-8279 or 859-323-4687.
This free cancer screening is available to postmenopausal women over the
age of 50 or women over the age of 25 with a documented family history of
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