I have advanced disease and am considering the possibilities for treatment. I can either have chemotherapy (probably carboplatin on its own) to try and control it. Or not have chemotherapy and get seriously ill as the cancer spreads and attacks other organs. How can I make the right decision? Is it better to let nature take its course and opt for palliative care?
What does the future hold now I’ve had a recurrence? Will the tumours keep reappearing? If so, is there any information or statistics as to how long before they do? I feel fine at the moment but will recurrent tumours weaken my body and make me feel ill?
Why does calcification (the build up of calcium salts in body tissue) occur and what does it mean? A friend and I both have low grade disease and we have a lot of calcification but we don't understand the significance of this.
What treatment options are available for third line treatment for low grade ovarian cancer? I have low grade disease and so far I had single agent Carboplatin (2011) for first line and Carboplatin and Gemcitabine with Avastin for second line (2014). During first line my...
What is the recommended follow up for a borderline tumour (stage 1c)? Is CA125 monitoring necessary after surgery if treatment included a total hysterectomy and removal of both ovaries? Due to completion surgery, I understand a chance of recurrence...
I was first diagnosed in Feb 2007. I’ve had chemotherapy and a hysterectomy. I am now on my sixth recurrence during that time (2007/2009/2011/2013/2014 & 2015.) I am currently on Taxol weekly. How is it I’m responding so well?
My cancer recurred after about two years, but I’ve been clear since 2009. How do I know I'm alright now when the doctors tell me I am? My CA125 increased but is well within normal limits, and a CT scan showed nothing unusual. How long do you have to wait to say you are clear?
What are the chances of ovarian cancer spreading to other areas?
Last week I was told I have ascites (abdominal fluid). I am not being operated on or receiving any more chemotherapy so it's a matter of living with it. My consultant doesn't want to drain it so I wondered if anyone had any tips on managing it, especially on diet, what to eat that might help or what to avoid.
Two and a half years ago I was diagnosed with ovarian clear cell carcinoma Stage 1a.This was a very early diagnosis and just in one ovary. I had surgery to remove my ovaries. After this I opted for three-monthly monitoring instead of hysterectomy or chemotherapy. Since then my CA125 blood levels have been normal and the monitoring has shown all is normal.
Am I right in understanding...
Is fatigue a symptom of ovarian cancer, or of a recurrence?
Some women say their CA125s weren’t particularly raised prior to diagnosis. Could they be better followed up with CT PET scans, HE4 or the use of other algorithms?
I was diagnosed in 2012 and had chemo and surgery. It came back late 2013, and I’ve had more chemo and started Avastin. I have been really well since until about 4/5 weeks ago, when fluid settled around both lungs and my legs are swelling. I have had 4 chest drains and 2 plural adhesions but I still feel rubbish! The cancer itself has not significantly spread but as you can imagine I have...
I carry the BRCA1 gene mutation and 12 years ago had a bilateral mastectomy, oophorectomy and hysterectomy for preventative reasons. I went to my GPs 3 weeks ago with severe back pain and pains in the tops of my legs and groin and he prescribed naproxen and I had an X-ray on my lower back and pelvis last week, after the results of a blood test showed raised ESR levels.
My mum just had ovaries and uterus removed as her periods were heavy and painful. She received her tests result today. It says bilateral papillary serous carcinoma. Tumours in both ovaries. Capsules intact. All margins are free of tumour. Does she have cancer?
I am post menopause and I have just started getting period type pains. I had a transvaginal scan and was diagnosed with three very small (one to two centimeters) fibroids. They weren't able to view my ovaries due to too much 'gas' and I am now worried because I have read fibroids don't happen post menopause and whether there could be something more sinister going on with my ovaries.
How reliable are CA125 tests, and is there a good alternative marker test, such as HE4? It’s worrying trying to monitor my own symptoms.
My father died from of bowel cancer, my brother had testicular cancer, my mother now has bowel cancer and I have ovarian. Would there be interest within the research area to investigate a genetic propensity in our family?
What research is taking place for less common ovarian cancer types? Are we likely to see more cancer specific treatments, for example treatments for low grade cancers?
I have read a lot about ovarian cancer, but the one area I don't feel gets enough attention is research into the obvious stuff, to either give credibility or to reject a myth.
For example root ginger is said to impact ovarian cancer, but does it? No effort is being made into research on this compared to Avastin or the parp inhibitors, and yet it could prove a cheap and easy remedy!...
How should someone with a stage 1C diagnosis decide whether to have single platinum based chemo or with the addition of Taxol when given the option given the lack of clearer research or data?
What are your views on proton treatment for ovarian cancer?
How long would you say chemotherapy takes before you get it out of your system and your organs to go back to normal?
My wife has 3c ovarian cancer since 2011, she has had de-bulking surgery and four full courses of chemotherapy. The disease has remained stable but the CA125 has increased, although not massively, since an emergency operation delayed her appointment to see her specialist this year.
Firstly, how do I go about finding out if better drugs are available for treating my wife's ovarian...
Please advise if there is screening for ovarian cancer either on NHS or privately and whether I should request genetic screening? My mother passed away from ovarian cancer when she was 53, first diagnosed at 50. I am 41 years old and would like to be proactive in looking after myself.
I was told some time back there were no current screening programmes and I do not have a family history...
Can you suggest a more effective treatment of sore gums following chemotherapy? I have just completed a second cycle of chemotherapy - carboplatin, gemcitabine and Avastin. I am having trouble with sore gums which are being treated with a mouth wash (Difflam).
How can I tell what is chemo, and what is likely to be menopause symptoms?
Both my mother and grandmother died from ovarian cancer - my mother was in her early 40s. I am now 36 and I I believe I am in an 'at risk' category. My aunt, who is now in her 50s, has regular screening for ovarian cancer following my mother's death, however as I was only 25 I was not offered this.
Following from my mother's death I visited the family cancer clinic and as there was not...
My mum was diagnosed with a recurrence of ovarian cancer three weeks ago. She finished her initial chemo two years ago. Her oncologist has prescribed six cycles of carboplatin followed up by Tamoxifen. Do you have any experience of this combination? And why might she only have been prescribed the single chemo drug rather than have it combined with Taxol (which she had in first line treatment...
Last June I was diagnosed with stage 3 grade 3 cancer. Because of already having neutropenia (an abnormally low concentration of a type of white blood cell) they said it was too risky to give me full debulking surgery because of risk of infection, so they took some of the tumour from the stomach lining. I am now on a clinical trial for Avastin. With four more cycles to go I have not met anyone...
My Mum in law was diagnosed last week with stage 3 ovarian cancer. She has now seen her oncologist and has been offered a choice of two treatments. Either: a) carboplatin alone or b) carboplatin and paclitaxel combined.
If she opts for the carboplatin on its own will the treatment be less effective than the combined option? If option b) is most likely to have the desired outcome, why...
What potential screening / detection markers are there? We’ve heard a lot about CA125 which is an imperfect measure. What about CA1-124 for example?
Why are there no early testing or scans done? Could they use ultrasounds so there’s no problem with radiation?
Carboplatin and Paclitaxel has been the standard treatment for many years. Are we any nearer finding a new, more advanced standard treatment?
Is there any specific diet /food that you’d advise to avoid or increase intake of?
The cancer is on the bowel and I've been advised it is in difficult location to treat including the front of the bowel. The hospital advised to follow a low residue diet but I sometimes still experience pain especially when the stool is moving through the bowel. I have had mixed advice about whether to include fibre in the diet. Can you give me any advice on diet so that I’m getting nutrients...
I was asked if I wanted to go on a cannabis trial. What do you think of cannabis trials?
Before I had a hysterectomy and chemotherapy, I was walking regularly and doing body pump to tone up muscle. Some articles I have read on the internet say only to do light exercise but I want to know if I can increase to moderate and strenuous things like body pump, weights or spin classes?
Are there any types of exercise that are particularly good for women both immediately post-op and later? And any that avoid the risk of causing or exacerbating lymphoedema?
I ended up with a bowel obstruction due to my cancer and was refused surgery apart from a surgeon at my local hospital who was willing to operate. This was my only option if I was to stay alive and I had been given a new lease of life. Are there any comments about a no surgery option in a case such as mine?
I am wondering if you feel Juice Plus is safe to take and would improve my health and wellbeing? I am interested in taking Juice Plus which contains 26 fruits, berries and vegetables in a capsule. It has been backed by 31 Clinical Research studies. I have looked at their website and it appears legitimate with information from oncologists. I am having...
A lot of new developments in treatment, eg PARPs and genetic testing, refer to all non-mucinous ovarian cancers, allowing for some mucinous tumours which do not originate in the ovary. Could the panel explain why this type is excluded and what the implications are for the future understanding and treatment of this type of ovarian cancer?
My wife has just finished chemo for relapsed ovarian cancer and we are trying to find information on reducing the risk of further relapses. We have read reports that turmeric works as an anti-cancer agent and wondered if you had heard anything about this?
What is the healthiest thing to do to ward off cancer (if it is possible)? For example, I hear drinking a glass of red wine a day can help keep cancer at bay. Are there certain types of food that can help?
I would like to know about any new developments for those of us who do not have the genetic form of this disease. Is immunology an option?
I am very interested in learning about any new developments for treatment or advances in understanding why ovarian cancer often recurs.
I have been researching the Budwig diet. One of the key ingredients for this is low-fat (1-2%) organic cottage cheese. But I can’t find it anywhere! The only organic cottage cheese is full fat and the low-fat one is not organic. Where can I get this? Failing that, do you know of any companies interested in producing low-fat organic cottage cheese?
I have been introduced to a book called ‘Crazy, Sexy, Diet’ which has been written by a woman who has cancer. She is trained in nutrition and is suggesting an organic, almost vegetarian diet. What do you think about becoming vegetarian, and using organic produce? How can I get all the vitamins and minerals that I need?
What is the safest way to go swimming? According to some experts, such as Dr David Servan Schreiber in his famous Anti Cancer book, we should avoid chlorinated pools. What are the other options, and how safe are they? Let's face it I'm not braving the English channel in this weather!
Why do some women recur earlier than others? I know four people that finished Avastin last autumn after about two years and three out of the four have recurrences. The other one is myself and my ovarian cancer has remained in tummy area since diagnosis in 2006. Should I be worried about recurrence?
I have granulosa cell carcinoma which has metastasised (spread to another organ). Is there any treatment or research going on anywhere? I have been told that chemotherapy and radiotherapy doesn't react.
A study from a professor at Utrecht University, published in September 2011, says fish oil prevents chemotherapy working. What’s your view on this? Should I stop taking my Omega-3 supplements?
What tests should I expect my doctor/gynaecologist to perform in order to detect any recurrence during the 5 year follow up and beyond, after an initial diagnosis for stage 1a ovarian cancer treated by surgery alone?
Is there any database in the UK for patients with any kind of cancers, and how well they’ve done on different treatments?
I am 75 and have been cancer-free for five years. I know it’s important to stay active, but at my age what can I be doing? Does my history of illness limit what I can do? I feel too old to become a gym bunny, and all they seem to do is scary looking aerobics classes.
I had radical surgery and chemotherapy for stage 3 disease. I’m now clear and having three-monthly check-ups. Why would the cancer return when I have had such radical surgery? I’ve tried to keep positive and I feel so well.
I lost my hair when I went through the chemotherapy, can you suggest how I begin to treat my hair as it starts to grow again? It looks as though it’s growing back white and I am only 50. Are there natural dyes on the market? Should I stop wearing my wig around the house? Or can I keep wearing my wig until I have enough hair for a cut?
Last September I was diagnosed with stage 1C 2 Grade 2 edenometriode adenocarcinoma of the ovary and in October Grade 1 1A endometrial adenocarcinoma. I was supposed to have had six months of chemotherapy but only had five months, I was poorly so they decided not to give me my last one. I don't understand the grades very well or the stages. Will my cancer come back at all?
I’ve got pins and needles in my feet since treatment. They seem to have got bigger too. I used to love my strappy heels but they don’t fit me anymore and I don’t fancy the Scholl-type footwear. What’s on offer?
Since chemo, I don’t think I look right. I can’t put my finger on it but I’ve changed. I just don’t feel like the same person. Trouble is I’m broke and the family budget is stretched to breaking point. Do you have any bright ideas about alternative ways of a DIY make over, without spending too much?
My skin is no longer fresh and dewy since my treatment. I’ve got acne and it looks sallow. How can I improve the appearance of it? What type of products will help restore a fresh-faced glow?
How can I make my very sparse eyebrows look full and normal again? Since my hair has grown back, my eyebrows seem to be very sparse. Unfortunately I am rubbish with an eyebrow pencil, I look like a mad goth!
I am taking early retirement later this year. Can you recommend a good website for comparing annuities?
I’m having chemotherapy and am horrified by the amount of hair falling out. I don’t know what to do about it. Some people think I should shave it off but I’m not sure how I feel about looking in the mirror at GI Jane. What are my options?
My surgeon was keen to put me on HRT, to protect my bones, but nobody warned me about the side effects. Sex became uncomfortable, dry and distinctly uninteresting. Much of this had not been discussed with me prior to the operation and it is devastating to feel this way at a young age. Support and advice on this matter would be great.
I am retired and live with my husband. We live in our own home with no mortgage. I’ve heard about people releasing equity from their property to help with cash flow. Can you tell me how this works and whether you would advise it?
I'm on Everel 50 HRT patches following my removal of my 1c granulosa cell tumour (which ruptured 26 hours prior to removal). I'm concerned about the safety of being on HRT with history of hormonal cancer. Can you advise?
Some women are under the impression that it is unsafe to take HRT, oestrogen, that feel good hormone that we miss when we menopause?
I’m considering taking Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT). Please can you explain to me how it works, and what the benefits and side effects of taking it are?
I read recently that research has shown the use of HRT can increase the risk of ovarian cancer. Does this issue refer also to the use of vagifem - the HRT tablet which I take vaginally for a bladder problem? I am 66 years old and was a member of the UTOCS research.
I had a full hysterectomy, but because the cancers are hormone driven (related to endometriosis) I can’t take HRT. I haven't received any support or advice from my hospital regarding the menopause. I’ve just been left to get on with it. What help is out there if HRT isn’t an option?
I want to help support my children through university but, since having ovarian cancer, I’ve had to use my savings and I am now no longer working. I’m worried I might have to tell them I can’t offer them any financial help. Is there anything positive I can do to help them with the finance side of things?
I have recently been diagnosed with ovarian cancer and am going to need a hysterectomy. What will happen when I have an early menopause?
More than two years after treatment, I still suffer from hot flushes and sweats. They come every 30 minutes, night and day. I have tried a number of medications and homeopathic remedies. I was on HRT for 14 years from age 50, but cannot go back on it now. I have been reading about soy/isoflavones. Is there a difference between taking a supplement and taking soy in the format of yogurt and milk...
I have been diagnosed terminally-ill with stage 4 ovarian cancer. I have critical-illness insurance but so far the insurers have refused to pay out. They insisted on waiting for the result of my treatment. My cancer came back after only a few months and I am now participating in a medical trial. I plan to contact the insurers again. Can you offer any advice?
Does IVF increase the risk of ovarian cancer? I had IUI three times and IVF once. I’ve been diagnosed with breast cancer recently. Is there a test I can have for reassurance after breast cancer is all dealt with?
I have been on HRT Evorel 100 and Utrogen 100 for two years - I am 57 yrs old. I now have intermittent bleeding - some fresh, some brown. Is this a symptom of ovarian cancer?
I had fertility treatment and then subsequently I had a hysterectomy but they didn't remove my ovaries. I would have liked to have known at that time that potentially I might have a risk. Is there any move forward to working with people who have had a hysterectomy and fertility treatment to advise them that in the future they have to be more aware?
I am worried I might not be able to work through my treatment for ovarian cancer, or for a while afterwards. I know I need to cut down on my outgoings and economise, but where do I begin?
If there were no ascites present in your abdomen why do you still have a bloated stomach?
I’ve just been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. I need to get my finances in order but have no idea where to begin. What’s your advice?
If you’ve had a thrombosis, would you be more likely to get one again?
I’m 53 and was diagnosed with advanced ovarian cancer a few years ago but I don’t know what the future holds. I’ve heard about life insurance policies for the over 50s – can I take one out now so that I can provide for my dependent children?
My libido is low since surgery, virtually non-existent in fact. I have heard about testosterone patches and implants; can you tell me a bit more about them?
Sexual recovery is very important. How do we get support from specialists?
My parents used to go abroad on holiday before my mum was diagnosed in 2008. Their reason for not going away now is because it’s difficult and expensive to get insurance. Are there any companies who offer insurance at a reasonable price for people who have been diagnosed?
My CA125 levels have recently risen slightly above normal and my GP has booked a scan (having had surgery and chemo for ovarian cancer in the past). I'm going to Canada in August 2013 with my daughters for three weeks. I have asked for a quote to cover all medical conditions, including pre-existing, and it was nearly £3000 (as much as the actual holiday!). I simply can't afford this.
I have terminal ovarian cancer with a spread to the omentum. I’m not currently having any treatment, or taking medication. My scans are clear at the moment, and have been ok for the last two years. I would like to go to the USA, or, if that is too expensive, to one of the Canary Islands. Is there any insurance companies that can offer reasonable quotes or should I just get insurance without...
Is it easier to get travel insurance when treatment is complete and I’m in remission? I heard it would be very expensive to get cover for America but ok for Europe. Is this true? If I decide to go to Europe can I just go with my European Health Insurance Card and possibly buy a Swiss Assist card?
If my pension provider doesn’t offer the best rate, is it easy to transfer the pension ‘pot’? Also I’m being treated for ovarian cancer for the second time, should I be asking for an ‘enhanced’ pension’?
I completed my degree last summer, around the same time that I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Having finished treatment a while ago, I now feel ready to apply for jobs. Should I declare my cancer on my application form or wait until the interview? Do I have to tell them at all? What are the benefits and drawbacks?
What causes this cancer? I don't have any measure of oestrogen in my body.
There seems to be very little information about primary peritoneal cancer. What can you tell me?
I have been diagnosed with a low grade non aggressive peritoneal carcinoma. All I have been told is that this is a rare cancer - chemo and radiation is not working. Can you give me some more information about this type of cancer, what it means and what treatment I will be given?
Is there a low and high grade classification for endometrioid tumours, and if so which has the better prognosis?
I’m currently free of cancer and finding it really hard to move on. What support is there for cancer survivors?
I am looking for information on carcinosarcoma of the uterus. Apparently it does not follow the treatment path for sarcomas and might follow the same treatment path as that for ovarian cancers?
I have been treated for Psammocarcinoma of the peritoneum. I had optimal debulking surgery and six rounds of carboplatin and ended chemo last August. I have now found a hard lump, about 3cm in my lower left abdomen. Can you tell me more about how psammocarcinoma recurs? What physical manifestations and what symptoms should I look for? How likely is recurrence following successful surgery?
I am 50 years old and had adult granulomas cell ovarian tumour removed in 2011. In 2014, ung metastases were noticed incidentally. Subsequently, a heart tumour was noticed. This had previously been overlooked on scans. I’m currently being watched with regular CT, cardiac MRI scans and blood tests.
1. I would be most grateful if you could give me some insight into where research...
Our expert explains what a psammonma body is in ovarian cancer
Do you have any information on the new FIGO stages of ovarian cancer? Where is stage 2C?
I look after my elderly mother but I am getting to the point of not being fit enough to do it myself. What help can I get? I can’t afford private nursing.
My sister has just been diagnosed with advanced breast cancer, and she has also been tested positive for the BRCA1 gene mutation. Our father was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer. How do I access genetic counselling and testing?
I have a rare type of ovarian cancer. I have neuropathic pains and have been referred to pain team. I am still managing to work but it is impacting on other activities like housework and sport. When I get tired, I get more pain. What will happen on my first visit to pain team? What kind of tests can they do to show where the pain is coming from? What can be done to treat this kind of pain?
I live in Swansea, Wales and I was diagnosed with stage 3-4 ovarian cancer in December 2013. I have four daughters aged between 21 to 39. I know of no other member of my family who has had it but I can only go back so far. I am concerned that there may be a genetic link with ovarian cancer and the possibility of my daughters maybe getting it at some time in the future.
I have a two-year-old daughter and my husband and I have always wanted two children. I’ve just been diagnosed with ovarian cancer and need to have a full hysterectomy. We’re devastated that we won’t be able to have more children and are struggling to come to terms with it. How we can deal with this? Are there any medical options? Would my cancer diagnosis stop us adopting or affect our chances...
I’m 34 years old, BRCA1+ and have been sterilised. What is the latest information regarding the best age for prophylactic oopherectomy? Could you also advise the best route I need to follow as my GP isn't very forthcoming.
I’ve got a BRCA1 mutation and am going to have my ovaries & fallopian tubes and my breasts removed as a preventative measure. I’m 35 and don’t want children. What are the advantages to having my womb removed at the same time – does it increase or decrease my risk of different types of cancer?...
The treatment I’m having has caused me to put on weight. I find this hard to deal with, avoid mirrors and no longer know what suits me. My face looks chubbier and I’ve gone up two dress sizes. I don’t want to hide away in black tent dresses. Any tips?
Why do they not tell you about ovarian cancer when you have had breast cancer?
My mum sadly passed away in August from ovarian cancer and I feel I have some unanswered questions. My mum had breast cancer 13 years ago and she got through this but in 2011 she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, and was told she had a BRCA1 gene mutation. I know there is a known link between ovarian and breast cancer if you have this gene mutation.
Was this known about 13 years...
It feels the minute you’re discharged from hospital you’re easily forgotten by local GPs. Continuity of oncology care at my local GP is patchy to say the least. Why is this?
My relative's stage IV epithelial ovarian cancer has recurred just over 12 months after she was treated with radical surgery, followed by chemotherapy with carboplatin, paclitaxel and bevacizumab. She is BRCA2 positive, and her cancer is oestrogen receptor positive. The recurrent tumours are small - less than 1cm and she is asymptomatic. Instead of repeating her chemotherapy straight away,...
I am on chemo (carboplatin and paclitaxel) for a recurrence of ovarian cancer and I am also taking Avastin. I have been experiencing more side effects than before (diarrhoea and joint pain). I will be continuing with Avastin when my chemo ends in about 6 weeks’ time and would like to know if there is evidence or experience out there that the diarrhoea and joint pain will ease when the...
I’ve had several continuing sessions of chemotherapy over several years, and want to know how long this can continue, and what’s the consequences of repetitive chemotherapy?
I'm aware that NICE advises single agent carboplatin whilst the Scottish equivalent also includes Taxol. Some women are advised to have both in England as well though in other centres just one. Is this a cancer centre preference or is it dependent on subtype, grade and type of 1c? It can be bewildering for women given an option or unclear basis for the decision. What issues are considered?
I wrote to my MP as part of your postcode lottery campaign back in June. What is the impact of me doing this? Do you collect data about women’s experiences of ovarian cancer to share with them?
Can you explain a little more about the new Consumer Insurance Act? What do women diagnosed with ovarian cancer need to know about it? Will it be beneficial or make it more difficult to purchase insurance?