Letter from the President
As I write this, I am unsure of whether I should wish you a splendid spring or if I should just switch directly to summer. Either way the weather has been beautiful and we are hoping it continues through all of our spring activities.
Speaking of...The "Wings of Hope" gala is right around the corner. Have you bought your tickets yet? You can purchase yours by going to our "Wings of Hope" event page. The committee has been working hard it promises to be a wonderful evening.
The Strides for Hope 5K committee has already begun working on the 5K walk/run which will be held on September 9, 2012. If you are interested in participating please let us know. Walk meetings will be the first Wednesday of each month at 6:30 PM at the Zangmeister Center.
Both the gala and the 5K help us raise awareness about ovarian cancer throughout central Ohio. But they also allow us to raise the funds we need to support the awareness, educational and support programs that occur throughout the year.
Money raised last year was used to send survivors to both national and regional conferences where they can learn about the latest treatments and new research. They can also attend sessions on coping the side effects of treatment, survivorship, and advocacy. They meet survivors from across the country and they can speak directly to their elected representatives about the importance of funding ovarian cancer research.
Funds are also used to provide educational materials to the public and healthcare providers through health fairs, public advocacy events, public speeches, media campaigns, public service announcements and general distribution of materials.
These are just a few of things that we do with the funds we raise each year. Every penny donated goes right back into the cause. We hope that you will join us in support of our mission this year at the gala and the 5K. We look forward to seeing you and we appreciate your continued support!
OCNA Midwestern Regional ConferenceOn March 9th and 10th, a group of survivors and OCAO representatives traveled to Indianapolis, Indiana to attend the 1st annual OCNA Midwestern Regional Conference. The conference was sponsored by our national partner member, the Ovarian Cancer National Alliance (OCNA), the OCAO and our regional partner organizations in Wisconsin, Indiana, Minnesota, Michigan and New Jersey.
Attendees were able to learn the latest on research and treatment going on in their own backyard. Dr. David O'Malley of the Ohio State University Medical Center spoke in conjunction with Dr. Manish Patankar of the University of Wisconsin about the latest research being conducted at OSU and U of W. Sessions were also held on clinical trail basics, research advocacy, survivorship and local advocacy going on throughout the region.
Latest in Ovarian Cancer News
New Research Shows Ovarian Cancer Often Begins in the Fallopian Tubes
After four years of work on her DOVE (Detecting Ovarian Cancer Earlier) project, the head of McGill University Health Centre's gynecological division, Lucy Gilber, has discovered that ovarian cancer often starts in the fallopian tubes.
Gilbert's research included working with women over 50 who exhibited slight symptoms of ovarian cancer, such as bloating, abdominal pain/discomfort, feeling full quickly, or frequent urination. Her team found that women with these symptoms were 10 times more likely to have cancer than women who did not experience these symptoms.
During the project, approximately 1,500 women with symptoms of ovarian cancer were screened and researchers found that 1 in every 132 of the women had gynecological cancer.
Diffusion-Weight MRI Best Option for Determining Response to Treatment
Studies at Cancer Research UK's Cambridge Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre at the University of Cambridge have revealed that diffusion-weighted MRIs are the best option for indicating response to ovarian cancer treatments.
The diffusion-weight MRI can give a better idea of the density and size of the tumors. Scientists were able to determine this using Apparent Diffusion Coefficient (ADC), which measures the movement of water molecules inside the tumor. After chemotherapy,when some of the cancer cells have been killed, the amount of space within the tumor is larger and therefore water molecules can move more freely. When there is less room for the water molecules to move, this suggests that the cancer cells are resistant or unresponsive to the treatment and may require a different type of treatment.
Scientists and doctors are continuing to do research with diffusion-weight MRI to determine how these discoveries can be used in larger groups of patients.
One of our goals with The Teal Report is to provide up to date, interesting and accurate information with regard to the latest in ovarian cancer research, treatment and general interest stories. We try to keep our eye out for stories that will interest and help you. The OCAO website features such stories on our Cancer in the News page.
If you come across a story that you feel would be beneficial, please contact Asst. Marketing Chair, Amanda Miller at email@example.com.
OCNA Scholarships Available!The OCAO will be offering survivor scholarships to the 15th annual OCNA conference being held in Washington DC July 14 - July 17th. Attendees will have the opportunity to:
- Hear from leading experts about cutting edge research on personalized medicine, molecular profiling and cancer vaccines
- Learn about clinical trials for ovarian cancer that are currently enrolling
- Meet fellow survivors and caregivers from across the country
- Speak with members of Congress about the need for further ovarian cancer research and education
- Celebrate OCNA's 15 years of service with music, dancing, birthday cake and other commemorations
This year's theme is "Poised for Progress" and it is designed to show the many ways we are poised for progress against ovarian cancer.
The OCAO will be offering 8 scholarships of $500 each. Survivors can also apply for additional funds through OCNA's scholarship program. Many survivors often choose to travel and room together for this conference - if you are interested sharing expenses, please let us know and we will try to provide you with information to help in this regard.
If you are interested in obtaining a scholarship, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that because we have a limited number of scholarships, preference will be given to first time attendees.
To get more information about the conference, please visit OCNA's page at Ovarian Cancer National Alliance ...
Check the Events Page and the OCAO Calendar for up to date information on events and meetings.
The calendar is updated regularly.
This is a recipe that I received from my fiance's mother, Sue Postle, and it is a family favorite. It makes great leftovers and is a crowd pleaser for all ages!
- 1 1/2 c. Thousand Island dressing
- 1/2 c. onion, diced
- 6 slices dark rye bread, cubed
- 6 slices light rye bread, cubed
- 1 lb. or 1-32 oz. jar sauerkraut, drained
- 1 1/2 tsp. caraway seeds
- 1 1/2 lbs. corned beef, cut into bite size pieces
- 2 1/2 c. shredded Swiss cheese
- 1/4 c. margarine, melted
Directions:Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9 x 13 inch baking dish.
Combine sauerkraut, caraway seeds and onion. Spread into the bottom of the baking dish. Layer 1/2 of the Thousand Island dressing and 1/2 of the shredded Swiss cheese on top of the sauerkraut. Place the corned beef pieces on top of the dressing and cheese then top with another layer of dressing and cheese.
Melt the butter in a dish and toss the rye bread pieces in, making sure all the pieces are well-coated. Spread the bread across the top of the casserole and cover with foil.
Bake for 30 minutes and enjoy!
- Amanda Miller
Kari Reynertson and her mom, Elizabeth
Ovarian Cancer is Something that is Happening To You But It Definitely Isn't Who You Are - Kari Reynertson
Born in Bittberg, Germany, Kari Reynertson is an outgoing and fun-loving young woman who just happens to have been handed a diagnosis of ovarian cancer. But she refuses to let that get her down.
One of four children (one sister and two brothers), Kari moved to Columbus in August of 2006. She had spent much of her life in California where her mom, Elizabeth, worked for the government. Moving back to Ohio allowed her to spend time with her older sister. It is a good thing she has her sister, Johnna, to look out for her. She was about to attend her first OSU game in a blue shirt until her sister informed her that was Michigan’s color and she would need to change.
After finding a job, she decided to go back to school. It was during this time that she started to experience symptoms. She was taking a patho/physiology course at the time and she wasn’t eating much. She felt full all the time and started having stomach cramps. She wrote it all off to the stress of finals and her monthly cycle. "I didn’t know anything about ovarian cancer. I thought it was just for women who had gone through menopause.”
A little later when Kari went in for her physical, her doctor decided to send her off for an x-ray after feeling something weird during a stomach palpitation. They noticed something on her right ovary and her right fallopian tube. She had also been experiencing gallbladder issues. "But I felt off – I just knew something was different and it wasn’t right.”
As it turned out, Kari’s instincts were correct. She would end up having 2 surgeries within 3 weeks of one another. The first was to remove her gallbladder. The second was to remove her right ovary and right fallopian tube. The nurses on the floor dubbed her the "comeback kid” but Kari’s personality made her a favorite patient. Close friends Kayla and Andrew were right there with her every step of the way.
Having received her diagnosis, Kari went through what most ovarian cancer patients do, shock. "It didn’t sink in at first. I kept picturing the MTV show "Punked” and I kept waiting for people to come in and yell PSYCHE!” But no one came in to tell her she had been "punked”. Instead they told her she had Stage IC ovarian cancer. She began a regime of chemotherapy under the care of Dr. Luis Vacarello at the Zangmeister Center.
When asked how she was able to cope with her diagnosis, Kari said it was her family and friends. When she began to lose her hair, a friend shaved her head while they drank margaritas. She continued to live her life. She enjoyed karaoke, goofy ‘80’s parties and her beloved OSU Buckeyes. "I am a HUGE sports fanatic!” She also snuggled with her beloved pets, her dog Skye and her cats Buckeye and Bella. In fact Bella rarely left her side during treatment.
She also developed close relationships with her medical team. She was especially fond of one nurse who resembled the actor Val Kilmer. He quickly earned the nickname "The Saint” and kept Kari entertained during treatment, even resorting to wearing the "PBJ” shirt from the "Family Guy” and doing the PBJ time dance.
But other things began to change while she went through chemotherapy. "Before my diagnosis, I always worried about what others thought about me, now I just don’t care. I do what makes me happy. If you don’t like it, well that’s too bad. I know my real friends will be there for me.”
Kari also found Inspire.com. A site created by a group of women dedicated to supporting those with ovarian cancer. Through that site she found another 24 year old woman with the same type of ovarian cancer. She was able to use the online group vent, share and laugh. It was very helpful because "there isn’t a handbook about having ovarian cancer…it can be hard.”
Today Kari is N.E.D. (no evidence of disease) and she is working towards a BSN in nursing at the Ohio State University. And there are a couple of things she would like you to know…
"Ovarian cancer is not a death sentence. Whether it is stage 1, 2, 3 or 4 – all of the treatments help, but so does a positive outlook. Don’t let it get you down.”
She also wants women to realize that "ovarian cancer is something that is happening to you, but it definitely isn’t who you are.”
With her outlook and her personality, Kari will definitely be a good nurse and a great advocate!
- Chris Gillespie
Books! Books! Books!
HBO's hit series "Game of Thrones" will return on April 1st and it seemed like the perfect time to review the first book in George R. R. Martin's epic fantasy series.
A Song of Fire and Ice" by George R. R. MartinIn the Seven Kingdoms, where the unpredictable seasons may last decades, three very powerful families allied themselves against their better natures to usurp the ruling Targaryens and depose their mad king, Rhaegar.
When the dust had settled, Robert Baratheon claimed the throne and wed his ally's daughter, Cersei. Ned Stark returned north to dark and fantastic Winterfell, with its ancient Wall that keeps the wildings and unspeakable creatures from invading.
Year's later Robert has become a drunk and grown fat. His wife hates him and has conspired with her brother Jamie to murder his closest adviser. Now he must summon his childhood friend Ned from the north to take his place. Ned obeys reluctantly since he distrusts Cersei and her brothers.
Ned quickly learns that the royal heir, Joffrey, isn't Robert's son at all. Before he can tell Robert, Cersei's family murders the King, throws Ned in a dungeon and seizes the throne. They are opposed by the remaining Starks and Baratheons.
On the mainland the deposed Targaryens are mounting their own army to reclaim what they believe is theirs. Viserys Targaryen has sold his sister Dany to a barbarian horse-warrior in return for the promise of armies to help him take reconquer the Seven Kingdoms.
At the end of the day, you don't know who is going to win and "Winter is Coming"...
- Chris Gillespie
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