HomeTagsPosts tagged with "ovarian cancer"

ovarian cancer

Ovarian cancer effects hundreds of Irish women every year.

However, many of these cases are not diagnosed until the later stages of the disease. 

This is largely due to the fact that symptoms usually take a long time to appear, and when they do they are often mistaken for other illnesses. 

According to a new study, there’s now a way to accurately detect the disease in the early stages.

Research has revealed that regular blood tests could be the key. 

Doctors and researchers monitored a group of ‘high-risk’ women (carriers of the ovarian cancer gene) over a ten year period and noted that cancerous tumours were detected much earlier when the women underwent blood tests three times a year.

Although this is a promising development when it comes to the early detection of ovarian cancer, it must be stressed that the study would need to be extended over the next few years in order to accurately determine how many lives could be saved.

Symptoms of ovarian cancer include, bloated feeling, persistent swollen abdomen, pain or dragging sensation in your lower abdomen or side and vague indigestion or nausea, among others. 

At the moment there is no national screening programme in Ireland and women who feel they may be at risk are advised to visit their GP.

And remember, smear tests will not pick up the signs of ovarian cancer. 

Trending

Did you know that almost half the women diagnosed with ovarian cancer every year are under the age of 65?

Many of us consider medical check-ups and smear tests as a problem for ‘future me’ to deal with, but with over 315 Irish women diagnosed with the disease every year, it's high-time we started to take notice of our health. 

And one 16-year-old model is urging young women to do just that. 

 

Bettering myself more and more everyday

A post shared by ǷɛʏƗoɴ (@peytonlinafelter) on

Peyton Linafelter began experiencing some unusual symptoms shortly after signing her modelling contract.

Speaking to Fox News she explained: ‘‘I couldn’t keep anything down.’’

‘‘My stomach was a little expanded. But I just thought I was eating a lot of carbs. I didn’t think anything of it… but each week my stomach got bigger and bigger. My lower back hurt a lot and my abdomen was in pain’’ she added.

 

Love your melon | Love your body | Love your life

A post shared by ǷɛʏƗoɴ (@peytonlinafelter) on

Peyton went to get herself checked out and on her 16th birthday she was diagnosed with stage four ovarian cancer.

‘‘I was in disbelief. I had thought they were in the wrong room or it was a mistake.’’

She immediately began chemotherapy as part of her treatment, and admitted that losing her hair was one of the most devastating parts.

Thankfully, after surgery and treatment, Peyton caught the disease on time.

She has now teamed up with UCHealth for a cancer awareness campaign, and is encouraging young women to go to their doctors if they notice anything unusual, no matter how trivial they think it may be.

 

Trending

All women, everywhere are in possession of one – but it seems that a lot of us actually struggle when it comes to saying the word: 'vagina'.

In contrast to male genitalia, of which there are numerous throwaway phrases, women also feel uncomfortable coming up with an 'acceptable' reference for their sex organs.

Even the word 'penis,' somehow seems far more ordinary and everyday. 

According to a survey of 1,000 women and released this week by Ovarian Cancer Action, two-thirds of those aged 18 to 24 would be too embarrassed to even use the word vagina at their doctor’s office.

Which is in contrast to older ladies over the age of 65: just one in ten in that age bracket reported the same thing.

More than half of younger women – 57 percent – would also rather just Google their symptoms than visit their GP to talk about vaginas and vulvas.

Ovarian Cancer Action, a British charity, did the survey to encourage younger women to speak up about their gynecological health. 

In Ireland, ovarian cancer is the fourth most common strain affecting women: more than 300 new cases are diagnosed annually.

Although relatively rare, some of us carry a genetic mutation that makes us more susceptible to developing the disease.

Angelina Jolie earlier this year revealed that she had undergone preventative surgery – having her ovaries and breasts removed – because she was a high-risk candidate. 

Trending

"Nothing in the world can prepare you for hearing that you have cancer. Nothing."

Those are the words of 20-year-old Ellen Curley, a Meath girl currently studying to be a primary school teacher. Last week Ellen was diagnosed with Stage 1 ovarian cancer, after months of back and forth visits to the hospital with increasingly severe pains.

At 20, she is at least three to four decades below the average age for a woman to be diagnosed with the disease.

"To add some background, until the 29th of September 2014, I considered myself to be a perfectly healthy person," Ellen writes in the first post on her blog The Ovarian Diaries, published yesterday. "On the 30th of September, things changed. I woke up in the middle of the night with an excruciating pain in my right hand side."

After having her appendix removed and returning to the hospital two weeks later for treatment for an infected fallopian tube, doctors discovered "a small, haemorrhagic ovarian cyst" which, although it was growing, was not initially considered to be a worry. At the end of June, Ellen was admitted to A&E once again after, by which time her pains had "reached a crescendo which left me in hospital on IV morphine."

Despite the need to remove the ovarian cyst, Ellen says she believed she had no need to worry. "As far as I knew, this was still a completely normal ovarian cyst. They were going to remove it, and possibly my ovary too, but after that I would be completely fine. I’d even still be able to have children perfectly fine with my other ovary," she recalls.

Sadly, tests later revealed that this was not the case and that cancerous cells were present in the cyst that was removed.

"I am now facing into a year of surgery to remove both of my ovaries, and my ability to have children from my own eggs, and also chemotherapy," Ellen writes.

 

Spring/Summer2015 hospital range #PostOp #IMadeIt #FYouOvary #hospital #ovary #buzzed

A photo posted by Ellen Curley (@curley1995) on

Her chances of beating the cancer are very high, but Ellen says it's the consequences of the surgery that have left her reeling. "As ridiculous as it sounds, I’m fine with having cancer, I don’t think I’m going to die as my cancer is in its very early stages and therefore is very treatable, but the fact that I’m losing my ovaries has broken my heart," she explains.

So what next? In an effort to document her journey and give herself something to focus on during her treatment over the next several months, Ellen decided to start her blog. And if her first post is anything to go by, it promises to be an honest, frank and beautifully written account of a no doubt extremely difficult time in this young woman's life. 

Follow Ellen's journey here.

Trending

Kelly Osbourne has revealed she may also elect to get preventative surgery at some stage, as she has a high risk factor for cancer like Angelina Jolie.

Speaking during a segment on The Talk yesterday about Angelina's decision to have invasive surgery to remove her ovaries and fallopian tubes to reduce her risk of ovarian cancer, Kelly said she had also been tested for the "cancer gene" and knows she will eventually have to take preventative measures.

Kelly's mum Sharon had a double mastectomy in 2012 after discovering she had a harmful mutation in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene which placed her at greatly increased risk of breast cancer. At she time she insisted her daughters also get tested, which is when Kelly found out she too was at high risk.

"I actually do have the cancer gene,” the 30-year-old said on the show. “My mom made all of us get tested after she found out that she had it and got her double mastectomy.”

Kelly said she agreed "100 per cent" with Angelina's decision to undergo preventative surgery, first with a double mastectomy in 2013 and now with a second surgery. 

"I know that one day I will eventually have to do it too because if I have children, I want to be there to bring them up. I want to be there to support them in every way I can," Kelly explained. 

"It’s something I applaud Angelina for because she’s bringing attention to this,” she added. "People are now going to go out and get tested for it.” 

We're delighted to see this sensitive issue being discussed so openly.

Trending

Weddings are often emotional events, but Lorraine Whyman's wedding to the love of her life was made all the more heart-breaking by the fact that she may have just two years left to live.

Lorraine, who lives in Manchester but is originally from Ireland, was diagnosed with breast cancer last May. Despite months of chemotherapy and surgeries, the cancer tragically spread to her brain, and doctors have warned her that her time is limited.

But the 33-year-old says that wasn't the reason her and boyfriend Jon Callahan wanted to tie the knot. "I wouldn’t want anyone to think we’d got married just because I was ill or because my lifespan has an expectancy," she told a local paper. 

"If there was a cure tomorrow we’d still be married 60 years from now – that’s why we did it… I wanted everyone to know this is the person I’m going to spend the rest of my life with."

The couple got married in Devon before flying to Ireland for a party with Lorraine's extended family. "There was no mention of anyone being ill, it was a normal wedding and that’s what we wanted," said the new bride. “We just wanted to be married and face whatever comes next together.”

Having experienced her own mum's death from ovarian cancer, and watched her aunt battle and survive breast cancer, Lorraine knows just how cruel the disease can be.

"I know what’s going to happen, I’ve seen it happen. But we just have to enjoy whatever time we have left," she said. 

Trending