An ovarian cancer diagnosis isn’t always a death sentence, though. There are stories of brave women fighting the disease and winning, sometimes more than once. Take Ashley Steinberg, for example. Shortly after her 24th birthday in August 2012, she was diagnosed with stage 1C ovarian cancer. In September 2012, she underwent surgery to remove the cancerous mass. The surgery was successful, and she felt fortunate not to have to undergo radiation or chemotherapy treatments.
Unfortunately, a year later, her cancer returned and she had to undergo another, more intensive surgery. Her second surgery was also successful, although she has battled ongoing symptoms, like sickness, depression, and pain, through the years.
Despite everything she went through, however, she has tried to remain positive. She often shares the following message with anyone who will listen:
“This cancer doesn’t get diagnosed easily. When it is diagnosed, it is often too late. Also, this cancer most often occurs in older women. I am young and I’ve had this cancer twice. My goal is to spread as much awareness as possible to save the lives of other females. I want people to learn how to take care of their bodies and listen to what their body is trying to tell them. I hope that sharing my story, strength, and determination inspires people.”
How Nurses Can Educate Patients
Oncology nurses play a big role in healing and caring for their patients. They’re present for some of the most difficult times of a patient’s life and are responsible for communicating with doctors to coordinate care. They are on the front lines when it comes to keeping ovarian cancer patients safe. They’re also responsible for educating their patients about their cancer so they fully understand what to expect going forward. Properly ensuring a patient is educated on the disease makes mapping out a treatment plan much easier.
How does your hospital care for cancer patients? Do you plan to participate in Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month?