Why the latest screening tests and treatments offer hope for ovarian cancer

Why the latest screening tests and treatments offer hope for ovarian cancer

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When Karen Howley LaCamera, 58, went to the emergency room with sharp pain in her abdomen in January 2018, she thought she was having another gallbladder attack. Doctors in the emergency room ordered a CT scan and told her that she would likely need surgery to remove her gallbladder if things didn’t improve. She was released later that night. But when she got home, the ER doctor called to tell her the problem wasn’t her gallbladder, but an orange-sized tumor on her ovary.

After various tests, surgeries and a biopsy, LaCamera, who lives in Sudbury, Massachusetts, was diagnosed with stage 3 ovarian cancer. “I was like wow,” she recalls. “When I look back, I think about the symptoms I ruled out.”

LaCamera says he “always felt uncomfortable and excused it.” He had frequent urination and pain in the abdomen, pelvis, and back. He also had bloating, or as she called it, a tummy tuck. “No matter what I did for exercise, I couldn’t get rid of it,” she says. She thought that she was just getting old.

When LaCamera underwent surgery, doctors discovered that her cancer had spread to 11 different organs.

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