Judy Hambleton picked up running this past July. In that short time she has competed in five 5K events.
It's a good outlet for the working mother of two daughters. "I find running very therapeutic," Judy says.
Around the same time she discovered this new passion, Judy was on a family vacation when she was visited by a surprise guest - her period. "I'm very regular, so I was not prepared at all," she says.
But what she thought as an off-cycle period then continued for three weeks. So she made an appointment with her Easton Hospital OB/GYN Christopher Mann, MD.
An ultrasound revealed a ruptured hemorrhagic cyst. Sadly, this was not her first gynecological problem.
At 19-years old, she had another period that began off-cycle. An ultrasound showed a growth on her ovary. In surgery, the tumor had twisted so severely around her ovary that both the ovary and cyst were removed.
As a young woman, she was worried about having children. "I'm very blessed that I wasn't affected, knowing how many women can struggle with conception," she says.
Now twenty years later, Judy was more prepared. From what her doctor said she knew the ruptured cyst would run its course.
But when her menstrual cycle remained irregular, she investigated. Dr. Mann suspected adenomyosis, a condition where the endometrial tissue that lines the uterus begins to grow into the uterus.
Judy was potentially facing a hysterectomy. The news wasn't shocking since she has a family history of hysterectomies.
But she wanted to do her research into the condition and decide on the best treatment options. She spoke with friends and her physician and read many articles.
In December, she decided a total hysterectomy was best. She scheduled surgery for mid-January at Easton Hospital.
"Easton Hospital is not the place people think it is," Judy says. "I got the best care I've had there."
Dr. Mann performed the surgery robotically, so there were only four small incisions in her belly - much different than the open surgery she had at age 19.
"In the OR, I could see the cohesion of the surgical team," she says. "And Dr. Mann was right by my side the entire time."
When she woke, Dr. Mann was still by her side. "He sat with me and my husband for nearly two hours that night. He really gives his patients 110%."
She felt great. "There was no pain," she says.
Judy was back to work in two weeks, much quicker than the six-to-eight weeks that accompany an open hysterectomy.
It helped that her husband Mick worked from home those two weeks. "He really took great care of me," she says.
Four weeks after surgery, she was back running. Her road to recovery seems short when compared to her new goal: Training for a half-marathon.
In fact, it's not uncommon for her to use her lunch hour to step out of the office and onto the trail behind her business and go for a run.
With surgery behind her, she has her sights are set on going the distance and feeling fantastic.
250 South 21st Street
Easton, PA 18042-3892