What Dr. Luke has to Say About Cancer of the Uterus

Zhang Ming Hua was a healthy 65-year-old lady living in a large city in China.  Both of her children were grown and she was living with one of her children.  One day she noted that she was bleeding from her vagina.  She immediately went to see a doctor at the local hospital.  The doctor listened to her story, did an exam and then told Zhang Ming Hua that she needed to have an examination of her uterus, have some blood tests and later to have some X-rays. Then she needed to be referred to see a Gynecologist.  She agreed to all of these options.  The next day she went to see the Gynecologist who did the examination of her uterus.  During the examination of the uterus the doctor took a sample of the lining of the uterus and sent it for laboratory exam. Later she went to have the X-ray of her uterus.  This test was called an ultrasound as they bounced sound waves off the uterus.

Several days later when all of the test results were back she went to see the Gynecologist again to talk about the test results.  The blood tests were all normal.  The ultrasound had only slight abnormalities.  However, the sample of tissue taken from her uterus showed some cancer.  Thus she had uterine cancer.  Zhang Ming Hua did not ask many questions but just listened.  She did not know any women who had uterine cancer.  She returned home and talked to her daughter about this.  As expected, her daughter was very concerned and had very many questions.  Her daughter wanted to go with her to the doctor and discuss the situation with the doctor and her mother.  So they arranged an appointment and returned several days later.

The doctor told Zhang Ming Hua and her daughter that the uterine cancer appeared to be in its very early stages.  They asked how they could have picked the cancer up earlier.  The doctor told them that at this point in the world there are no good tests, which can pick up cancer of the uterus up earlier.  A patient would need to go to the doctor at the very first signs of symptoms.  Generally the first signs are bleeding from the vaginal tract.  Thus the best way to pick uterine cancer up is to go straight to the doctor like Zhang Ming Hua.

Abnormal bleeding like Zhang Ming Hua is the first sign of uterine cancer in 80% of the cases.  Some women have abdominal pain but this is rare.  Most of the women who get uterine cancer are 50-70 years of age.  Risk factors for uterine cancer are obesity, diabetes, having multiple children, taking a medicine called estrogen, extended use of a particular kind of medicine for breast cancer treatment (the doctor would know this kind of medicine) and a few younger women who go for many months without having their menstrual period.

Zhang Ming Hua wanted to know how common uterine cancer is.  Though not very common it is the second most common type of cancer in the female genital tract in China. 

Zhang Ming Hua and her daughter had a lot of questions about treatment, which we will talk about in a minute. However, before we do that we should talk first about the anxiety they had.  This was important as they both knew the doctor told her that with treatment she should do well.  However, they were both so afraid she would die soon.  How could they overcome this anxiety?

Zhang Ming Hua had a friend her age that told her about a story she had heard.  This story was about a lady who also had bleeding problems but who could not be healed until she met a man named Jesus Christ.  This friend told Zhang Ming Hua that this story was written in the Bible.  Zhang Ming Hua found a Bible from a friend and read this story.  The story is as follows. 

'As Jesus was on his way, the crowds almost crushed him.  And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years, but no one could heal her.  She came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak, and immediately her bleeding stooped.  'Who touched me,' Jesus asked.  When they all denied it, Peter said, 'Master, the people are crowding and pressing against you.'  But Jesus said, 'Someone touched me; I know that power has gone from me.'  Then the woman, seeing that she could not go unnoticed, came trembling and fell at his feet.  In the presence of all the people, she told why she had touched him and now she had been instantly healed.  Then Jesus said to her, 'Daughter, your faith has healed you.  Go in peace (Luke 8.42-48).'

What a story.  Jesus Christ made this lady whole just by her touching Jesus Christ's clothes.  What a miracle!  How could this lady be healed so quickly and completely?  Because Jesus was not only a good man but also the Son of God.  He was God himself.  The eternal God of the Universe who came to earth to save all of the people of the world.  Another man wrote about Jesus in the book of John and said several statements about Jesus.  'Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which arenot recorded in this book.  But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the  Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name (John 20.30,31).'  This is so important.  Jesus not only came to give us complete physical life but he also came that we might have life in his name.  Life not only now but for all eternity.  Thus people like Zhang Hua Ming need not fear about dying.  Death is but a step to eternal life with Jesus Christ.

John says this in another place in the book of John.  'For  God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son that whoever believes in him will not perish but have everlasting life (John 3.16).'  How do we go about getting this eternal life?  Zhang Ming Hua wanted to know how to get this eternal life and have a fuller life not only now but also for all eternity.  We will talk about that in a moment but let's return first to one question Zhang Ming Hua and her daughter had about the treatment of uterine cancer.  How is it treated?

Before considering treatment of uterine it is important to determine to what extent the cancer has spread from the uterus.  This is important, as it will determine the treatment. If the cancer is just in the uterus, then only surgery is needed.  If the cancer has spread beyond of the uterus then other treatment will be needed.  Thus before treatment many other tests are done. For example a chest X-ray (to see if the cancer has spread to the lungs), MRI or Cat Scans of the abdomen to see if the cancer has spread to other parts of the abdomen.  There are also other tests the doctor might think are important to do.  After these tests are done then the doctor can consider when to do the surgery.

There are three types of treatments for uterine cancer.  The first and by far the most important is surgery.  This surgery involves taking out the uterus of the patient as well as the ovaries and tubes of the patients.  This is a fairly major operation.  However, in the hands of a good surgeon the operation can be done well.  It is also important that the surgeon has experience with uterine cancer so while they are in the operation they can look for cancer which has spread beyond the walls of the uterus. 

The surgery is done and will take several hours.  After the surgery the patient will be allowed to heal up for several weeks.  However, during the surgery the surgeon will determine if the cancer has spread beyond the walls of the uterus. If the cancer has spread beyond the walls of the uterus then the surgeon might recommend two other types of treatment. This could be either radiation or medication. 

Though these treatments can cause the patient some discomfort it is important that the patient be allowed to have these treatments if they are needed.  Why is this important?  Because in some patients the patient will be cured of the uterine cancer.  Some patients will not be cured but their pain and discomfort will be lessened a lot and they will live a lot longer than they would without the treatment.  Certainly there are side effects with the radiation and medicine treatments. However, these treatments are generally minimal and most people elect to have treatment after the surgery.

Most women who immediately go to the doctor with the first sign of vaginal bleeding have uterine which is confined to the uterus.  If this is the case then they can be completely cured of their cancer.  When Zhang Ming Hua had her surgery the doctor told her that all of her cancer was confined to the uterus and it was all removed during the surgery.  She also needed no additional radiation or other medicine for the uterine cancer.  This certainly was very good news for Zhang Ming Hua and her daughter.

The doctor did tell her that there was no guarantee of cure though except to watch over time.  The doctor told Zhang Ming Hua that after 5 years without further evidence of return of cancer then probably she could be considered cured of her cancer.  This certainly left Zhang Ming Hua and her daughter with some anxiety.  How could they deal with this anxiety?

Zhang Ming Hua returned to the Bible, which she has been reading and read the following about anxiety.  'Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcents all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in  Christ Jesus  (Phil 4.6,7).  This really comforted her.  However, Zhang Ming Hua really had a desire to know this Jesus more.  She learned from a friend that it was important to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.  Like the woman who was mentioned above and was healed from her bleeding.  This woman got to know Jesus personally and he healed her.  Zhang Ming Hua's friend told her that she needed to confess her sins or her wrongdoings to Jesus.  That she had wronged Jesus and then he would forgive her of her sins.  She would no longer be bound by the sins of her past and Jesus would free her to live a life of freedom.  How could she do this?

Her friend told her that she needed to believe that Jesus had died on the Cross for her sins, then she need to believe that Jesus had been raised from the dead to show his power over death which was and is caused by the sin of her and all mankind.  If she believed in that then she would have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and would be able to live forever and also have a full and abundant life in Jesus Christ now.

Her friend told her that she could believe the following from the Bible.  'That if you confess with you mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead you will be saved (Romans 10.9).'  Zhang Ming Hua really wanted to believe this.  In fact she did believe this.

If you want to believe this same message and have eternal life you can. It makes no difference whether you have cancer of the uterus or any cancer or are healthy.  The Bible says, 'For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3.23).'  All of us need salvation from our sins through Jesus Christ.  The Bible also says, 'For the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ (Romans 6.23).' 

If you pray the following message then you can have eternal life with and through Jesus Christ.  'Dear Lord Jesus, I know that I have sinned and have done wrong and deserve only your punishment for my sins.  I believe though that you died on the cross for my sins. I also believed that you rose from the grave after dying for my sin to show that you have control over sin and death and are victorious over sin and death. I now place my trust in you.'  If you have prayed this prayer congratulation you are now a child of the eternal King, Jesus Christ.  You have eternal life with Jesus starting at this very moment.