In our derisive political environment, it’s hard to find something everyone can agree on. But this month–Ovarian Cancer Awareness month, to be exact–party lines are coming together to heighten knowledge about this often deadly form of cancer.
In a White House press release, President Donald Trump and his wife Melanie Trump honored all those who have lost the battle to ovarian cancer and encouraged greater awareness for early detection.
Trump touted the 21st Century Drug Act, which was passed (almost unanimously by Congress) last December and signed into law by President Obama. It allocated a whopping $4.8 billion in new funding to the National Institutes for Health, $1.8 billion of which was earmarked specifically for cancer. The President pointed to two ovarian cancer therapies that have been approved by the FDA this year as success of this bill. (However, it’s not clear that there is a direct relationship between the bill and the approval of these particular drugs.)
Regardless of their origins, new therapy options for women with ovarian cancer are reason to celebrate.
Ovarian cancer currently has no adequate screening test, which is why it often goes undetected until it has advanced too far for effective treatment. The press release sited that more than 22,000 American women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2017, according to the National Cancer Institute. About 14,000 will lose their lives to this aggressive disease. Early diagnosis and treatment is key, and awareness is the number one way for women to safeguard themselves.
The symptoms of ovarian cancer are often subtle and easily confused with other ailments, reports OvarianCancerAwareness.org. These symptoms may include bloating, pelvic or abdominal pain, difficulty eating or feeling full quickly, urinary urgency or frequency, nausea, indigestion, gas, constipation or diarrhea, extreme fatigue, shortness of breath, backaches, and weight gain.