Janice Di Luzio-Bard, Erie, PA

I had problems for years. Cysts that came and went. Hormonal issues. Periods missed for months on end. Bowel issues. And so many more. In the six months before my wedding, I gained 50 pounds. I looked pregnant. I went to an endo who said I was ‘fat and lazy’ and looking for an excuse for it. At 28? Right before my wedding? Family doc said irritable bowel. They all said ‘in my head’ that I was the ‘nervous type’. Finally went to a psychiatrist. He didn’t believe it was in my head. He thought PCOS and began testing for Cushing’s also. With new belief that I wasn’t crazy, I asked around and found a female gyn. By this time, I was 34. She diagnosed me same day–despite passing an upper GI week before, her ultrasound showed 21 x 26 x 18 cm tumor, weighed 10 pounds, had a tail wrapped around stomach. Retiform sertoli leydig cell ovarian cancer. Ca-125 was 92. Experimental protocol chemo (inpatient for one week, on out patient weeks I got injection of third drug).

Keep fighting if you have vague but persistent symptoms. I was lucky I didn’t die. They gave me a year. I am closing on 15.