October 6, 2008

Retreat Celebrates, Educates Ovarian Cancer Survivors


A retreat leader demonstrates ancient
Chinese relaxation techniques.

    Participants gather for a breakout session   in the Ottenheimer Cancer Education Center.

Education material and merchandise were available at the retreat.

Oct. 6, 2008 | Complementary treatments and the latest research news were topics of discussion at this year’s “Shout About the Disease that Whispers” retreat for survivors of ovarian and other gynecological cancers.

The one-day event was held Sept. 27 at the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS).
The annual retreat was hosted by the Just Among Women support group and was open to women with ovarian and other gynecological cancers and their support persons. About 60 people attended.
The keynote address on “Recurrent Ovarian Cancer” was presented by Pamela J.B. Stone, M.D., assistant professor in the UAMS Division of Gynecologic Oncology, a section of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

The lunch presentation on “Journaling for Health” was presented by Paulette Mehta, M.D., professor in the UAMS Department of Hematology/Oncology.
Participants had the opportunity to attend two breakout sessions, which included a question and answer session with a gynecology oncology nurse, a presentation on hereditary breast and ovarian cancer, therapeutic oncology massage and Falun Gong, a traditional Chinese practice that improves mental and physical wellness through a series of exercises and meditation.

Ovarian cancer ranks fifth as the cause of cancer death in women. According to the American Cancer Society, there were about 22,430 new cases of ovarian cancer in the United States in 2007.

If found in its earliest stage, ovarian cancer has a cure rate of 95 percent, but because its symptoms often mimic those of gastrointestinal disorders, they are often overlooked until the disease has significantly progressed.

Symptoms of ovarian cancer include persistent bloating, pelvic or stomach pain, feeling full quickly after eating, and frequent urination.