Fighting the Good Fight: Ovarian Cancer

By: Nicole Holt Email
By: Nicole Holt Email

Cancer -- it's a battle thousands fight each year, a battle so many lose. That is a reality that hits home for us here as we have lost a colleague, friend, and inspiration at KXII.

Denee Frazer worked in the sales department at KXII for 13 years, before losing her battle with ovarian cancer. Her last wish was for us to help in the fight, to raise awareness, promote early detection and hopefully save lives. With the help of her dear friend Martha Sutherland, we are Fighting the Good Fight.

“I am fighting the good fight. I’m fighting this battle for my own life, but I’m fighting for other women as well.”

Ovarian cancer can be a deadly and silent killer. The warning signs are not always apparent.

Mark Frazer is Denee’s husband. He says, “The disease has symptoms that are the same as other viruses. We both had the symptoms, she went in and it was ovarian, I had an ameba from when we were on vacation.”

Dr. Tammy Roque with the Texas Cancer Center says, “The most common type of ovarian cancer is epithelial ovarian cancer. That most commonly occurs in patients that are post-menopausal. That represents about 90 percent of the patients. Those symptoms include abdominal bloating, enlargement of the abdomen, pressure/pain in their pelvis, difficulty with eating, feeling as though they are full and also problems with urination, frequency and urgency.”

But it's not just older women that are susceptible, it can occur at any age. A lot of times it's genetic. That concerns Martha because ovarian cancer goes hand in hand with breast cancer. “Frankly right now, I don't know that much about the gene testing. When they gave the test to me this morning, I said do I really want to do this? Do I really want to tell my daughter I may have this bad gene? They said yes, she needs to know.”

Dr. Roque says, “In patients that have a genetic cause for breast cancer or ovarian cancer, there is a certain gene defect, that's wing named BRCA1/BRCA2. There is a blood test that we can check for this gene defect. In some instances, breast cancer can be as high as 60 % and ovarian cancer as high as 40%.”

Scary thought, but reality. “It is rewarding to know that we have ways of diagnosing someone before they develop cancer, we're doing more research looking for proteins and other things to help diagnose before a patient develops cancer.”

Though it's not the cure, it’s a good start. After all, we are all Fighting a Good Fight.

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  • by Christine Location: Sherman on Jul 26, 2007 at 02:43 PM
    I have been reading your stories on ovanian cancer and Nicole & Martha have done a great job. I too have ovarian cancer and have done the genetic testing. I was first diagnosied in April 2006, went into remission in Nov 2006 and then diaganoised again in April 2007 with a tumor in the pelvic again and in the right lung. I was also at the relay in Denison in May and it was my first and was a very moving time, I was also in tears when I saw all the supporters clapping for us. Martha, I heard your story that night and it brought tears to me and my daughters. I know you have the same attitude I have about this disease and someday I hope to meet you in person. We will keep up the great fight as we know nothing else will do at this time in our lives.
  • by Darlene Location: Calera, ok. on Jul 25, 2007 at 08:33 PM
    This would very good to have on 5:30 world news.The whole world should know about ovarian cancer.It is long overdo. I am an 8 year survier myself
  • by Barbara, Tom Bean on Jul 25, 2007 at 09:48 AM
    Yes I too have been watching your story on ovarian cancer because your friend and mine, Martha Sutherland is someone I have known since 1991, and yes her attitude toward this terrible thing that has taken over her body has made her an inspiration to everyone.
  • by Darla Location: Denison on Jul 25, 2007 at 09:24 AM
    The series on ovarian cancer was wonderful! Good job Nicole!
  • by Anonymous Location: Ardmore on Jul 25, 2007 at 06:51 AM
    You do not list Pre-menopausal symptoms. People need to know those as well!
  • by Woman in Sherman Location: Sherman on Jul 25, 2007 at 06:29 AM
    Great Story, Good Job, Nicole did a wonderful Job getting the word out. Hats Off to you Nicole. Keep up the good Work.
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