Start 2 Finish is proud to partner with the Ovarian Cancer Awareness Foundation to present the Teal For A Cure 5k and 1 Mile Fun Walk. Ladies, one of the fun things about running is that it is an opportunity to do something you love with benefits much deeper than selfish gain. Most races raise money for a particular cause, some hit closer to home than others. This week, we want to encourage you to support a causes that raises money for research for a women's disease that many of us may face. We have a friend who is a survivor of ovarian cancer and continues to fight her battle today. We have asked her to share her story with you ...
I was diagnosed with stage 3C ovarian cancer on May 3, 2010 after a year of abdominal pain for which I had gone to the doctor on multiple occasions.
It was in April of 2010 when my pain got much worse and encompassed my entire abdomen and lower back, and I knew something was very wrong and went to the emergency room. I also had been having bloating and gastrointestinal issues, and I began to feel full when I barely ate anything. After that ER visit, it took nine doctors visits and an entire month before I demanded tests be done for ovarian cancer. When the doctor finally ran a CA125 cancer antigen, my level was 1244; normal is 0 to 35. Based on my physical exam and this high lab value, it was decided I needed to go to the West Clinic, a cancer clinic, for a plan of action. It was decided I need an oncologist to perform a very extensive surgery.
On , surgery revealed that the cancer was so advanced that it covered my colon, ovaries, uterus, bladder, omentum (fat lining of abdomen), diaphragm, and multiple lymph nodes, but fortunately the doctor removed about 99% of the visible cancer, but three weeks later, I would need to start chemotherapy. Since that surgery, I have had about 45 chemotherapy treatments because every time I stop chemo, my CA125 increases out of the normal range, and my cancer begins to reappear. It is very difficult to fully eradicate this type of cancer, and it appears that I may have to have chemo the rest of my life.
My advice to you is: DO NOT IGNORE PAIN. If you have pain, there is something causing it. I also encourage you to be aware of the signs of ovarian cancer, because although it is known as the “silent killer,” most of us with ovarian cancer have experience that it is not silent at all. There are multiple symptoms, but unfortunately doctors don’t usually put it all together and make a diagnosis until a late stage, when mortality is much reduced. If you have a family history of breast, colon, or ovarian cancer, you also need to be vigilant about keeping an eye on your symptoms.
Share this information with others! Do not ignore pain, and be your own medical advocate! Push until you get a diagnosis! I am so glad I did, but I wish I had done it much earlier.
God is good because I am still alive 3-1/2 years later, but this cancer has definitely affected my life, and my life, just like yours, is in God’s hands! I thank God for every day I breathe! - Tarin
Register to run the race this weekend and join us on Tarin's team - Tarin it up! Deadline for online registration is tomorrow!! Hurry!
To learn more about ovarian cancer, visit the Ovarian Cancer Awareness Foundation website.