Need To Know: Vaginal Cancer

The good news? Vaginal cancer or Vulva cancer is not a common affliction – it occurs mainly in women over age 50. And, if your doctor detects it early enough, it’s often curable. The bad news? Sometimes doctors can give a delayed diagnosis and you’re left to suffer. In 2008 in the US, there were 2,210 new cases of vaginal, vulva and other female genital cancers, according to the National Cancer Institute. If you are one of the unlucky statistics who has had their situation compounded by a delayed diagnosis, you’ll want our help. We’ve secured million dollar settlements and verdicts for clients who’ve been the victim of medical malpractice. Let our expertise bring you the greatest possible resolution to your claim. Our vaginal cancer attorneys and vulva cancer attorneys are well equipped to handle your case. We have a small group of dedicated New York vaginal cancer lawyers and New York vulva cancer lawyers that will regularly communicate with you regarding your case.

In 2008, we were contacted by a woman who found a lesion on her vulva and reported it to her gynecologist. The doctor failed to take a biopsy and told her it appeared to be just a yeast infection and prescribed anti-yeast medication. Meanwhile, the lesion and vulva cancer grew and spread throughout her vulva. She returned to her gynecologist’s office as directed in 6 months, and fortunately was seen by another gynecologist who immediately referred her to an oncological gynecologist who performed a biopsy, detected the vulva cancer and performed surgery. The initial doctor was negligent because he failed to immediately biopsy an open, obvious and potentially cancerous lesion. Situations like this occur all too often, as doctors become complacent and fail to take the next step to diagnosis a obvious potentially cancerous condition.

Vaginal cancer and Vulva cancer are elusive diseases. It’s rare and few women have any symptoms at all. Their cancer is not detected until they go in for a gynecological exam. However, one culprit has been consistently linked to vaginal cancer. DES (diethylstilbestrol) is a synthetic form of estrogen that was prescribed between 1938 and 1971 to help women with pregnancy complications. It turns out, in some cases it helped the pregnancies, but later harmed the babies. Some women that were born to mothers that received DES have developed vaginal and breast cancers as a direct result. No certain preventative measures for vaginal cancer are known, but early detection can be maximized by having yearly pelvic exams and Pap smears. The rarity of the disease means that no set method of treatment has been developed. How you decide to treat it will depend on discussions that you’ll have with your doctor. Radiation, surgery to remove cancerous tumors and a hysterectomy are all options that you can take. With a disease like cancer, it’s important to arm yourself with as much research and advice as you can before taking your next steps. You can contact the National Cancer Institute for more information at 800-4-CANCER, or 800-422-6237. The American Cancer Society also offers support by telephone at 800-ACS-2345 or 800-227-2345.

There are many diagnostic tests your doctor may use to determine if you have vaginal or vulva cancer. A pelvic exam, Pap test, colposcopy and biopsy are common procedures. With a biopsy, a small amount of tissue is removed and examined under a microscope. Other tests can suggest that cancer is present, but only a biopsy can make a definite diagnosis. Because there are many steps along the way where a diagnosis can be delayed or overlooked, there is room for error. The doctor may misread results, not get accurate results, or fail to refer to you a specialist in time to get you adequate treatment to conquer the disease. If a medical error has caused you unnecessary suffering, look to our legal team for help. Michael Gunzburg, P.C. has an experienced team of delayed diagnosis vaginal cancer lawyers and vulva cancer lawyers that will fight for your rights. We understand that cancer is not something that effects only you-it effects everyone around you and impacts your outlook on life. Let our experience work to your advantage-we have over two decades of it.

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