Thursday, December 14, 2006


My aunt has ovarian cancer. I found out this evening, the day before her surgery. My uncle just told us, I am not sure why they waited or if they really did wait. It is possible that things have happened so fast that there was no time to tell us between finding out, scheduling the surgery and now. She has ovarian cancer and this is very scary.

The thing about most cancers is that there is a way to tell that there is something wrong rather early. Something doesn't feel right, or something isn't working the way it should or someone finds a growth somewhere. The problem with ovarian cancer is that there are no overt symptoms that specifically lead to ovarian cancer - none. If the cancer is caught early, there is more than a 90% chance of 5+ years survival. But because of the non-specific sypmtoms, only 19% of ovarian cancer is caught in the early stages. On top of that, they can't tell what stage the cancer is in until after the surgery through the biopsy. This means, we won't know ANYTHING until sometime tomorrow or early next week.

My aunt is strong and independent, someone who can conquer pretty much anything that is thrown her way. She lived in Manhattan for years, first with her first husband, then alone and then with my uncle until she and my uncle sold their place on the Upper West Side and permanently moved to their farm in the upper Catskills. She has survived so many things, including a very bad break in her leg from a skiing accident.

She rides and shows horses, she wrote magazine articles until she retired, she skis, she travels, she enjoys life and living it. All of these things point to a very strong person who should be able to fight this insidious disease. We also know that she has one of the best surgeons in Manhattan, another point in her favor.

My aunt has ovarian cancer and suddenly nothing seems as important as the hands of the surgeon operating on her tomorrow.

Please keep her in your thoughts.

1 comment:

Barbara said...

Hang in there. I am a survivor of stage IIIC and still fighting the beast. I had the surgery in Feb. 04 and did my original chemo. I was cancer free for six months and then it started to come back. I have been doing chemo ever since and keeping it at bay. Waiting for my miracle. If you want to email me your aunt's name I will add her to my prayer list. As for now God knows who she is and the surgeons who will be operating. Put your trust in Him.