Recurrent Disease

Recurrences are common in patients with PPC or FTC because most patients with either cancer are diagnosed when they already have advanced stages of disease. The majority of patients will initially go into remission, but the disease commonly returns months to years later when the CA 125 levels begins to rise, or new masses are found on physical exam or imaging studies. Unfortunately, the prognosis for this cancer is not favorable once it recurs, but a longer remission before recurrence is associated with a better chance for a second, third and even fourth remission.

There are several treatment options for patients who recur, depending on the location of recurrence, time since the initial therapy and the patient’s overall health status. These options include repeat surgery, re-treatment with the same chemotherapy that was given initially or a different type of agent. Radiation therapy can also be considered for selected cases. Each recurrence is different, so their treatment must be individualized based on a variety of factors including those listed above. It is also important to investigate whether there is a clinical trial [hyperlink to the Importance of Participation in Clinical Trials] that is appropriate for the patient. Unfortunately, once a recurrence is diagnosed, one must re-focus the goals of treatment to help prolong quality of life rather than a cure.

Spotlight

Visit the Sisterhood of Survivorship page to read “Dena’s Story” — by a vulvar cancer survivor who has shared her story and wise words, and channeled her energy into her National Race to End Women’s Cancer team.

Awareness

The CDC recently announced that fewer than half of American children are given the HPV vaccination.

Research

As of the July 23 deadline, 55 research abstracts were submitted in hopes of receiving one of only 6 grants from the Foundation. This points to a need for more funding so that the Foundation may award grants to every deserving applicant.

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.