Judee Bushko - Patient Story

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"Dr. Bergman gave me a sense of confidence that made such a difference."

— Judee Bushko, Endrometrial Patient

I was diagnosed with stage 3-C endometrial cancer in 2007. I had had a normal Pap smear in January that year, but when I started experiencing some spotting, I went back to my doctor in November. After I had a vaginal ultrasound, my doctor ordered further testing, including a biopsy of the lining of my uterus. The biopsy came back positive for cancer.

Although my husband, David, and I live about two hours north of Philadelphia, I decided to seek treatment at Fox Chase Cancer Center, where my son and daughter-in-law urged me to go. I didn’t waste a minute getting an appointment, and by December I had a meeting with Cynthia Bergman, MD, a gynecologic surgeon at Fox Chase.

Cancer is such a frightening word, and I went into the appointment feeling afraid. Dr. Bergman managed to strike a tone that was both serious and optimistic. She spent so much time with us and answered our long list of questions patiently and thoroughly. She gave me a sense of confidence that made such a difference to me.

Dr. Bergman recommended that I have a complete hysterectomy, which was conducted in early January. After five days in the hospital, I recuperated at home and returned to work as a middle school teacher five weeks later. Dr. Bergman outlined my treatment options after surgery, which ranged from active surveillance, also called watchful waiting, to chemotherapy or vaginal radiation. I trust Dr. Bergman’s advice and asked what she would do, knowing that she sees this every day. I opted for a series of three radiation treatments, which turned out to be painless. I was fortunate to have had a better experience than some normally do with radiation, and I now return periodically to Fox Chase for follow-up testing and blood work.

I can’t say enough good things about Fox Chase. The nurses are fabulous, and are so attentive to even the smallest detail. There is an upbeat spirit throughout Fox Chase, which is vitally important for a cancer patient. Being treated there has made all the different to me. At Fox Chase, cancer is not a hopeless word.

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