Tuesday, January 08, 2008

To ooph or not to ooph...

Ooph? Aren't those the little orange guys in Willie Wonka's chocolate factory?

It's short for oophorectomy. And no, that's not some STD i caught working on cruise ships.

Oophorectomy - the surgical removal of the ovaries.

Huh? Ovaries? Aren't those, like "necessary" to the usual workings of a premenopausal woman? Don't you need them for those babies you were just talking about?

Funny, enough... no and no.

Here's the deal. You wouldn't think these go together, but with all this talk about babies, I've also started thinking about taking out my ovaries.

Let's talk cancer for a second, shall we? My breast cancer was highly estrogen positive. Cancer eats it up like stove top stuffing after a night at the bar. (Funny how I keep using alcohol analogies for cancer) The current clinical trial I'm in is looking at how depriving your body of this estrogen would help prevent recurrence. It's looking like it might. We don't know. I do know however, that many people have already had this procedure. Seems a little extreme, you think. Fuck, maybe it is. But I've already been in menopause for a year and a half... what's the difference?

Wait, wait... Courtney, how can you get knocked up, then? Ah hah, Danielson... remember what I taught you. You recall the harvest? The frozen kidcicles? Those 18 snow babies waiting on ice? We'd use those. Hell, when I spoke to my fertility doctor, his response was "you'd still have a uterus, right? That's all I need."

So, I'm thinking about taking out my ovaries to put me in menopause, then using my frozen embryos to get me pregnant, post cancer. No ovaries. Like some fucked up science project.

What's the point? Why not do it "the old fashioned way" and then yank them? Well, as some of you might remember, Alan and I were "trying" very hard before I got diagnosed. No love. The longer it takes to try, the longer I am off my anti-cancer drugs. Then I'm off them for another 9 months, time to breast feed (there's a post for another day.) If it takes us 6 months just to get pregnant, that's 6 more months I'm not on tamoxifen.

Also, I guess yanking the estrogen factories from my body makes me feel like I'm doing SOMETHING to fight recurrence while I try to get pregnant. Sure, while I'm baking that bun I'll be hopped up hormones, but that will happen no matter what. I guess it's the pre-knocked up-post baby phase I'm concerned with. And if I'm using the frozen variety, then why the hell do I need the other ones? Doesn't frozen from concentrate taste almost as good as fresh squeezed?

So anyway, with this in mind, Alan and I made a visit to our friendly local reproductive endocrinologist over Christmas. Well, not local really. My kidcicles are parked in Chicago. He seemed to be all for it. I've scheduled an appointment with a gynecologic oncologist to talk more about an oophorectomy... yay! another doctor!

So.... decisions, decisions... Stay tuned!

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