Thursday, September 4, 2003
Ovarian cancer is still the deadliest
Until there’s a test, awareness is best!

Ovarian cancer is still the deadliest of the gynecological cancers and is often thought of as a silent killer even in the medical community. However, women who are aware of this cancer’s symptoms and discover the disease early can fight and defeat this covert enemy. According to the American Cancer Society, an estimated 25,400 American women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2003, and 14,300 are expected to die from the disease. The five-year survival rate for patients whose disease is detected in late stages is only 25 percent, yet if diagnosed before the cancer has spread outside the ovaries, a woman's chance for five-year survival rises to 90 percent. Therefore, early recognition of symptoms and early diagnosis can significantly increase the patient's survival rate. “It is imperative for women to be aware of the risk factors for ovarian cancer,” said Afshin Bahador, M.D., director of Gynecological Oncology at City of Hope Cancer Center in Los Angeles, California. “Women over the age of 50, those with a personal or family history of ovarian, breast, colon or uterine cancer and women who have not had children have an increased risk of the disease.” Right now, ovarian cancer does not have a reliable screening tool, so paying attention to changes in one’s own body can lead to the early diagnosis that is crucial for successful treatment. Know the symptoms:
  • abdominal pressure, bloating or discomfort
  • constipation, diarrhea or frequent urination
  • nausea, indigestion or gas
  • abnormal vaginal bleeding
  • unusual fatigue or backaches
  • unexplained weight loss or gain
  • unexplained weight loss or gain
  • shortness of breath.
If these symptoms are unusual and persist for more than two weeks, women are advised to see a doctor. To aid diagnosis, Dr. Bahador suggests combining a pelvic/rectal exam with a CA 125 blood test and a transvaginal sonogram. Also, treatment by a gynecologic oncologist, an obstetrician/gynecologist who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of women with cancer of the reproductive organs, has been shown to increase survival significantly. For more information about ovarian cancer, contact the Ovarian Cancer National Alliance at 202-331-1332 or visit
Trip to Myrtle Beach
The Nanticoke Senior Center is planning a trip to Myrtle Beach, on Sept. 29-Oct. 3. The trip includes: Roundtrip motorcoach transportation, accommodation for four nights at the Landmark Resort; five shows with orchestra seats; cruise on the Intercoastal Waterways. Meals include: breakfast daily, two lunches plus lunch on cruise and four dinners. Taxes and gratuities for hotel, maids, included meals, motorcoach driver, luggage handling, Tour director from Four Seasons Tours and Travel. Highlights include: Shopping and Luncheon cruise on the Intercoastal Waterways; Evening performance of Lullabies of Broadway; Matinee performance of Legends in Concert; Evening performance of Spirit of the dance at the Palace Theater; Morning show Carolina Jamboree; Evening Musical Show “One” at the Alabama Theater. Cost is $615 double occupancy or $715 single occupancy. Sign up at the front desk or call 629-4939 for more information.

Nanticoke Health Services Auxiliary
Pat Olekszyk, president of the Nanticoke Health Services Auxiliary, will conduct the first fall meeting of the organization on Wednesday, Sept. 10. An 11:30 a.m. luncheon at the Seaford Golf and Country Club will precede the business meeting and will consist of open-faced BLT, chips, cole slaw, sliced fresh peaches, and beverage. The cost of the luncheon will be $10, and reservations are required. Dorothy Cranston, membership chairperson, encourages everyone to bring a friend who may be a prospective member to this annual membership meeting. The speaker will be Don Phillips, chairman of the Community Health Board of NHS, who will share updates on the reorganization of the Community Health Board. Anyone interested in joining the auxiliary may call Jane Foskey at 875-5629.

Support Group meets September 9
The Sussex Fibromyalgia Support Group will hold its monthly meting on Tuesday, Sept. 9, at 7 p.m. at the Methodist Manor House, 1001 Middleford Road, Seaford in the Wesley Wellness Center employee lunch room. The program will include a video, “Growth Hormone Factors: Their Influence on Pain and Sleep,” by Dr. Robert Bennett. Friends and relatives are welcome. For further information, call Jonathan Souder at 629-4593.