Monday, April 21, 2014

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Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month
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If you drive by Crouse Hospital at night, you may have noticed its clock tower is lit up in a unique color this week. The tower is teal as a way to help bring awareness to ovarian cancer, which is the fifth leading cause of cancer deaths in women. Our Brad Vivacqua reports.

UNITED STATES -- Ovarian cancer is the eighth most common cancer in women, excluding skin cancer, so it may not be a cancer we hear about all that often. Crouse Hospital is highlighting Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, and women are advised to understand the risk factors associated with the disease.

If you pass by Crouse Hospital when it’s dark out, you've probably noticed that the historical clock tower is teal blue, which is calling attention to the issue.


Dr. Mary Cunningham is a gynecologic oncologist and an attending physician at Crouse. She says women should know their family history of ovarian cancer especially with their mother, sister, or daughter.

Symptoms like abdominal bloating, heartburn, and weight loss are common with the disease and shouldn't be ignored without getting checked out.

"If they're having persistent symptoms, to see their doctor for evaluation. The other thing is that's important is recognizing family history. So, family history is an important component of ovarian cancer in about ten percent of cases," said Dr. Cunningham.

Dr. Cunningham says there are about 22,000 new cases of ovarian cancer diagnosed every year in the United States. She suggests women take some time to complete a risk assessment questionnaire online.

You can find that the Foundation for Women’s Cancer website, http://www.foundationforwomenscancer.org/.

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