Effects of Radiation and painful intercourse

Hi, I went to see my ob/gyn today because after my radiaiton treatment I have been experiencing painful intercourse.  He recommended that I use an Estring, which is a ring inserted in your vaginal area and remains for 3 months.  He said this should give me relief plus using a dilator every other day to help stretch the area.  Has anyone else experienced this and what have you tried?  I am alittle nervous about putting estrogen in my body in case it should encourage the cancer to grow again.  I had recurrence last year and I am just finishing my treatment.  I go back to MDAndersen on Feb. 5 for a follow up PET scan.  

Janice sent you a hug.
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I would not want to discourage you, so keep using the dilator. I never tried the Estring. I am 9 years out of treatment and intercourse is pretty much out of the question for me. That said, many women are able to resume a sex life with such help as your doctor has suggested. I wish you all the best.
I use Vagifem, and Estrace cream externally. It has helped. I was using the dilator only for months, and my doc noticed the tissue was no longer pink and prescribed the meds. I am limited to a pea sized amount twice weekly. It helps, a lot! No experience with the Earring. Might want to run this by your oncologist for opinion. Our cancer is not estrogen dependent, so I was told.
Sorry for that auto correct, supposed to say Estring.
I used Estring that a dr gave me for painful intercourse due to post metapause. I grew cysts on both ovaries in a matter of a few weeks. I have had cancer and a hysterectomy in my 20's. I am now 65. My regular dr said a good dr would not give anyone estrogen that has had cancer. I ended up having my ovaries removed. I know t his may not be the answer you want to hear but I think estrogen is not safe for anyone who has had cancer. It's tough because estrogen works pretty well for that symptom.
Dianne, after my first set of treatments in 2014, I used a dilator and also I was already on hormone replacement pills. I was 59 and had been on them for 10 years at that point. I am convinced that the estrogen kept my vagina in good condition because I was able to resume sex with my husband about 2 months after my last radiation treatment. There is no connection between estrogen and AC. But I have a question for you: If I understand correctly, you are Stage 4? and you have not had colostomy surgery? Instead did you have proton treatment for a recurrent tumor in your rectum with Dr. Eng at MD Anderson? Thank you for any help on this. Many prayers, Alexis.
Alexis, that is what my obgyn said "no connection between estrogen and AC." Yes, I am stage 4. I did not have colostomy surgery. My cancer did not come back in the anal canal. It reappeared in the sacrum area and front pelvic area. After 5 months of chemo, I still had cancer remaining in my sacrum area, it did reduce a lot from the chemo, and Dr. Eng recommended radiation treatment for the sacrum area. I saw Dr. Holiday, a radiation oncologist at MDAnderson and she recommended Proton treatment since I already had radiation when I was first diagnosed. Hope that helps
Yes, it does. Thank you.
I am looking to you for hope and courage. I greatly admire you for what you have just gone through. I am about embark on virtually the same treatment starting next Wednesday. My cancer metastasized to my liver and I have just finished 2 SIRT procedures to my liver which was successful for the right lobe and we will see on the left lobe in a few weeks. Dianne, you are one tough girl! Thanks for sharing it all.
Good luck. I am here for you if you need any advice or just someone to talk to.
We are going to go see Dr. Eng soon. I will let you know what she says.
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April 14, 2015

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