JENNIE: Meagan Ryan’s message to other young women about ovarian cancer

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AUGUSTA, Ga.–  Ovarian cancer accounts for nearly 3% of cancers among women. And while thousands are diagnosed each year, many don’t even know they have it until the advanced stages.

Meagan Ryan was diagnosed at age 24…  which is quite rare.  She and her sister, Dottie White, are committed to getting out the word about the importance of proper testing and knowing your body.  Meagan shares her personal journey through the disease, including the tough talks about life expectancy (she has already exceeded her doctor’s estimate) …. and what her legacy will be.

From explaining what symptoms led her to a doctor in the first place, to her courses of treatment and her grim diagnosis, Meagan’s candid conversation will inspire you to want to be your own best advocate when it comes to medical care.

Her doctors at Augusta University describe gynecologic cancers:

Each year, thousands of women are diagnosed with one of the 5 gynecologic cancers… and the research to find a cure continues.

Most cervical cancers are caused by a virus… but it is preventable, through yearly screening or by using an effective vaccine.

Dr. Sharad Ghamande is Chief of the section of Gynecololic OncologY at MCG at AU.

“It’s amazing, I mean when I was in medical school, if somebody would have told me there was gonna be a vaccine that could prevent cancer, I would not have believed it, but over the last few years there’s been an explosion of not one or two, but 3 good vaccines which are incredibly safe and very effective, in fact if you compare the efficacy and safety of these vaccines for prevention of cervical cancer is stunning.”

Dr. Benja Rungruang is a Gynecological Oncologist at AU.

“For cervical cancer smoking can be a risk factor also infection with the HPV virus, and then for ovarian cancer there a genetic susceptible that some women may have.”  She says knowing your body can be key. “It’s really important to know what is normal for you, because a lot of the symptoms are very vague.”

Support groups have been important to Meagan and Dottie… you can keep up with their progress on the following sites.

“Like” on FB at Team Meagan

Instagram: TeamMeagan17Gmail: teammeagan2017@gmail.com

They also are strong supporters of The Lydia Project and its support of women with cancer.

For more information about The Lydia Project and the Lydia House, click here.

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