Awkward Auntie Question No. 7

question-no-7

Ever had a question about relationships or sex that you just can’t ask your oncology care provider?  Ever felt too shy to ask a nurse or doctor a question but really need the answer?  Now you can ask those questions and get answers from Dr. Anne Katz, the Awkward Auntie!

Q: I’m a 36 yr old stage 4 colon cancer female.  I’ve had a complete hysterectomy and suffer from vaginal dryness now. Is there anything I can do to permanently restore my body’s natural lubrication?

Awkward Auntie: Vaginal dryness – as well as vulvar dryness – is very common after removal of the ovaries. Because you had colon cancer that is not hormonally driven, you can use some local estrogen to help restore the tissues. You could also use hormone therapy in a systemic form (such as pills) that would address some of the other side effects of life after menopause such as hot flashes if you have those. There are different kinds of local estrogen including a small tablet that is inserted into the vagina, a silastic ring that is inserted into the vagina, or progesterone cream that is inserted into the vagina. Your primary care provider or GYN should be willing to prescribe these for you – and if there is reluctance, perhaps your oncologist can do some education with them. It would also be important for you to use lubricant for any and all sexual touch/play and of course for penetrative intercourse.

You can learn more about this great program, find the answers to past questions, and submit a question of your own by going here!

More about the Awkward Auntie program:

Dr. Anne Katz, also known as the Awkward Auntie, is a certified sexuality counselor and nurse who has written a couple of books about young adults and cancer – and all the things that happen to your body, relationships, and sex during and after treatment.  She will be answering any and all questions that you send to AwkwardAuntie@lacunaloft.org or that you submit in the form below. You don’t have to give your name or other identifying information – but it might be helpful for her to know how you identify yourself by gender, your age and what kind of cancer and treatment you had.

YOU CAN ASK HER ANYTHING…. Don’t hold back!  Your questions will be answered periodically and posted on our Awkward Auntie page.