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Hello Carolee,

Welcome to the EmpowHER community. I am so sorry to hear about your ordeal, and as of yet, not getting any definitive cause for your symptoms.

For now, you need to remain in the U.S. Have you been evaluated by a gastroenterologist and an infectious disease specialist? If not, I urge you to speak with your primary care physician and ask for a referral for both of these specialists.

I can provide you with general information.

In stage II vaginal cancer, the cancer has spread from the vagina to the tissue around the vagina.

Surgery is the most common treatment of vaginal cancer. If the uterus and cervix are taken out through a small incision in the abdomen using a laparoscope, the operation is called a total laparoscopic hysterectomy.

A fistula that has formed in the wall of the vagina is called a vaginal fistula. A vaginal fistula that opens into the rectum is called a rectovaginal fistula. A vaginal fistula that opens into the colon is called a colovaginal fistula. A vaginal fistula that opens into the small bowel is called a enterovaginal fistula.

A fistula can develop following surgery to the back wall of the vagina and radiation therapy to the pelvic area.

A fistula lets urine or feces pass into your vagina. If you have a rectovaginal, colovaginal, or enterovaginal fistula, you most likely have foul-smelling discharge or gas coming from your vagina.

Your genital area may get infected or sore. I am concerned that what you are calling boils are infected areas caused by leakage of stool, which would explain the fever and chills as well as fatigue and brain fog.

A gastroenterologist can use an endoscope to examine and locate a fistula. MRI of the pelvic area would help in the diagnosis.

Carolee, please stop taking Optifast. If you have been taking the high fiber content product to lose weight, and do have a vaginal-rectal fistula, the added fiber in your diet could be making matters worse.

I think you need a thorough work up and a consultation with an infectious disease specialist who can rule out any parasitic or bacterial infection that you could have contracted while in Africa.


August 17, 2015 - 8:39am


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