Baby steps (or no-more-baby steps)


So we are renaming Tuesday to Tubes-day. It will be the day I take my first baby steps on my journey to embracing the title 'previvor' and a surgeon removes my Fallopian tubes (and not have any more babies).

This isn't an option most people know about, but the research over the past few years is leaning toward showing that up to 75% of ovarian cancers start in the fallopian tubes. So, for a BRCA mutation carrier, the thought is this could be a preventive measure taken without throwing a 34-year-old into surgical menopause. Menopause, when it happens naturally, carries a lot of possible issues for women from the known hot flashes and mood swings to the lesser discussed bone, heart and mental health issues. To endure any or all of those at such a young age and without the gradual progression means it's all that more impactful and inconvenient.

For me, there were/are two other factors at play. I just had my third baby in December, so being post partum, my hormones are already in flux. Taking my ovaries could really throw me out of whack. I'd like to enjoy my time with my last baby and not endure hot flashes or mental fog. I also have not yet had my prophylactic bilateral mastectomy, so most physicians wouldn't automatically allow me to take hormone replacement therapies. After the mastectomy, with my risk levels drastically lowered, most specialists agree even BRCA mutation carriers who undergo an oophorectomy or hysterectomy are eligible for treatment of their menopause symptoms, should they present themselves.

Not to mention, three cheers for permanent birth control! We knew our limit was three kids -- no, we will not be 'trying for a boy' or any other crazy ideas people get when they see our family. We are closing up shop.

What you should know if, for any reason, you are considering this procedure for risk reduction is that the research is not *quite* there to say this is the last procedure you'll need. I will have my ovaries out later. I am considering doing it while I have the mastectomy, but if not at that point, then shortly thereafter. I won't risk leaving them in there, but my timing may look different than that of others on this path.

Some still feel this is not a procedure that fits them. My oncologist reminded me it is making what could be one surgery into two. My pathologist brother-in-law wants me to do it all now. But it works for me, at the point I am in my life. I am ok with my decision and my first baby steps.



  1. Thank you, our stories are the same. I have cried for days, undecided. Today I followed my heart, I'm loosing the tubes. It's nice to have a confirmation that I made the right choice. Thank you.

    1. Best of luck to you. I found it a relatively easy procedure and am still satisfied with my decision.


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