News Release: Join the Two Jennies: GYN Cancer Survivors Fight for Awareness & Funding for “Below the Belt” Cancers That Will Claim 30,000 Lives This Year

Washington, DC — April 2013 — Most people don’t enjoy talking about their health “below the belt.” It’s personal and embarrassing to discuss. But, did you know “below the belt” gynecologic cancers (cervical, ovarian, uterine, vaginal, vulvar) will claim 30,000 lives in 2013? And, these deadly reproductive cancers receive only a fraction of the attention and research funding as other cancers with similar incidence levels.

Meet the “Two Jennies,” Co-Chairs of the 2013 National Race to End Women’s Cancer, Sunday, Nov. 3 in Washington, DC.

  • At 32, Jennie McGihon, marketing director for Deloitte LLP’s national life sciences practice, was the picture of health and fitness. When she began to experience irregular bleeding, it took a year of tests and misdiagnoses before the true cause was found: stage III ovarian and stage I uterine cancer.
  • Monologist and writer Jenny Allen, whose essays and articles have appeared in The New York Times, The New Yorker, and Vogue, wrote and performed a funny, soulful one-woman show, “I Got Sick Then I Got Better,” about her harrowing journey following diagnosis of ovarian and uterine cancers.

Join the Jennies! Representing the nonprofit Foundation for Women’s Cancer, they’re on a mission to shine a bright spotlight on GYN cancers that strike 88,000 American women each year, many in the late stages of disease, and to raise funds for more diagnostic tools and treatments – so more women survive.

President Obama’s mother died of ovarian cancer, as did his former rival Mitt Romney’s mother-in-law. The list goes on: Gilda Radner at 42, Dixie Lee at 42, Coretta Scott King was 78, and Jessica Tandy died at 84. Olympic gymnast Shannon Miller and Kathy Bates are both survivors of these cancers.

Because age is not a driver of these cancers, it is critical for women to:

  • Learn the symptoms
  • Listen to their bodies
  • Take steps to detect these deadly cancers early enough to successfully treat them

Learn more and register or donate to support the National Race to End Women’s Cancer here – to help save women’s lives.

The Two Jennies (along with expert GYN oncologists who specialize in treating women’s cancers, as well as other local survivors representing African American and Hispanic patients and other GYN cancers) are available to provide additional information, and share their personal stories. Contact Karen Bate at 703.402.2672 or karenbbate@gmail.com to arrange an interview.

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The Foundation for Women’s Cancer is a non-profit organization dedicated to funding research and training, and ensuring education and public awareness of gynecologic cancer prevention, early detection and optimal treatment. The National Race to End Women’s Cancer on Nov 3, 2013 is the Foundation’s major national awareness and fundraising event. For more information, visit foundationforwomenscancer.org.

Spotlight

Women Magazine released a special report on ovarian cancer, featuring Q&A’s with three expert SGO surgeons and important facts about the disease.

Awareness

This year’s GCAM awareness is focused on the important link between obesity and endometrial cancer. Check out the new toolkit to learn more.

Research

The Foundation for Women’s Cancer is pleased to share its 2014-2015 Research Grants and Awards booklet. The booklet describes the prizes and the application process. Prize applications are due on October 8, 2014.

Education

The Gynecologic Cancer Global Health Forum will be Saturday, Sept. 6, 2014 in D.C.. For more information on educational events and courses, click here.