CDC Symptom Diary Card

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Gynonc Surgeons To Rock Our World In D.C. Oct 1, 2014

I have to say that I was elated and shining from within after attending a recent showing of N.E.D. The Movie  This uplifting documentary speaks so intimately and powerfully about the wrath of ovarian cancer, as voiced by the surgeons in NED The Band.  N.E.D. stands for "no evidence of disease".  That is our goal!

I had no idea what to expect, but what I felt was a sense of pure dedication and purpose.  These highly skilled and honorable gynecological oncologists are also gifted with musicality.  They use their events and cd inserts as a vehicle to start the conversation about ovarian cancer.  Their music though is for the masses.  They are a rock band through and through!

Please link to their homepage for more about their music, their movie and their mission.
N.E.D. The Band

I want to thank Deborah Binder for hosting the event in beautiful Edmonds, WA to raise funds for

Seattle F.O.R.C.E. Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered  and National Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer Week

Here is a note from Deborah.... "I am so glad that you were able to attend the NED movie and that you enjoyed it.

Most gyn-oncs know N.E.D. because they have played many times at the national oncology conferences around the USA.  I first heard them one year in D.C. at the National Ovarian Cancer Alliance meeting.  I know that my doc.--Dr. Goff and Dr. Muntz know them.

Last October I traveled to Portland to see the movie--a fundraiser for the Southern Washington and Oregon Ovarian Cancer Alliance.  After I saw it I knew that I wanted to do a similar event for OVCA Awareness month in 2014.  I rented the Edmonds Theater (it's where I live and I wanted to use a small hometown theatre not a megaplex) and I rented the movie from Spark Media".


if you live in the D.C. area........

Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz is hosting a movie event in D.C. on October 1, 2014.  Please spread the word so that more money can be allocated to fight these cancers.

Capitol Hill Screening
First Street Southeast

Website  LINK
Description Representatives Debbie Wasserman Schultz & Renee Ellmers present a Congressional screening of No Evidence of Disease, featuring a live performance and panel discussion with members of N.E.D. This special event will take place on October 1st, 2014 at 6:15 PM.

N.E.D. The Movie Screenings link

Peace and Blessings,


Thursday, September 25, 2014

Fibronectin And Our Cancer

Ovarian Cancer Dream Team Call for Ideas Now Open

su2c logo
The American Association for Cancer Research is now accepting submissions of ideas for the new Stand Up To Cancer Ovarian Cancer Translational Research Dream Team Grant that will offer up to $6 million in research funding, which includes $3 million provided by the leading funder, OCRF.
The Stand Up To Cancer-Ovarian Cancer Research Fund-Ovarian Cancer National Alliance-National Ovarian Cancer Coalition Translational Research Dream Team grant provides three years of funding for research projects that must include therapeutic interventions for ovarian cancer and deliver near-term patient benefit through investigation by a multidisciplinary, multi-institutional Dream Team of experts. Proposals for the grant must describe plans indicating how the group will use a transformative and synergistic approach, and how the work will be translated into the clinic. To maximize creativity, innovation, and collaboration, the projects should span multiple disciplines and use modern scientific tools to attack research questions in a coordinated effort.
Letters of Intent for SU2C-OCRF-OCNA-NOCC Translational Research Dream Team Grant are due by noon ET, Nov. 7, 2014, via proposalCENTRAL.
Read the full press here.
Please take a moment to link to the article below, posted by the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund.   As a non-scientist, I found it invaluable towards my understanding of how ovarian cancer cells proliferate, specifically in the omentum.  Learn about fibronectin and its role in the spreading of cancer.
Peace and blessings,

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

A Hippo Has My Campus

I grew up in Colorado.  I consider the Denver metro area fairly easy to navigate. One of my jobs after college involved daily travel, criss-crossing across town helping people regain independence after illness or injury.  I really should know the basics and major Denver area streets, even if I have been away all this time.

I always had considered myself someone who was good with directions.  I always knew where I was, even when I was in a new city or town.  I rarely got lost.  I was never afraid to drive for the sake of driving.  I used to love to get in my car and go, just see where I would be.  I could never do that now, after all of this chemotherapy....eeks.

Even after moving to California, I was still the same, had a great sense of direction and rarely got lost.  It was one of the few areas that gave me confidence, my sense of direction.

Well, my sense of direction has gone kablooey.  I am not sad and will try to remember to adapt, but I find it extremely interesting that "navigation" is such a specific area of loss for me.  I also have difficulty with estimating time.  I am always late now.......sorry everyone.

I just got back from visiting family and friends.  It was one of the best short little trips ever.  Just plain fun and it was a real treat to see everyone.  I can affirm though that I definitely am not the same confident navigator that I used to be.  I got lost 5 of the 7 times I went to meet people.

I got lost going from the airport to see my dad.  I got lost going to and from my brother's house.  I got lost going to see an old friend, where I had been before.

I got lost going to Denver International Airport.  My flight back home was after 9 pm and there I was driving around the countryside in the dark, looking for alternate routes to Pena Blvd.  Maybe next time I will get GPS.  To be honest, I was a little nervous.....and somehow it all worked out.  I barely got to DIA in time, whew.  I thought I was going to miss my plane!

I have no idea how I found the airport.  I would have called to get help after a few more minutes of driving in circles, but I am sort of concerned that this chemo brain is getting worse.  It seems that I forget what I am doing, lose track of time and get lost on a regular basis.  Maybe it is not worse, just more noticeable?

I get lost going to my dentist every time.  So strange.  

I am linking a few interesting articles on brain function and chemobrain.  It is an area of high interest for researchers and it does seem that the hippocampus, an area responsible for navigation, can be damaged by some chemotherapy agents.

I can't believe I got lost going to the airport.  Ha!  I think I should get a GPS, what do you think?

Low Doses of Cisplatin Can Damage Hippocampus

What Happens When A Neurosurgeon Cuts Out Your Hippocampus


Thursday, September 18, 2014

Penn Team Finds Ovarian Cancer Oncogene in "Junk DNA"

For those of you interested in genetics, here is a fascinating article relating new findings with "junk DNA" and it's effect on BRCA genes and mutations.

I am not a scientist myself, it takes time to read.

What impresses me is that this particular type of research enables us to create a way to stop cancer if the links are proven and consistent.

There is always hope.  I thank my cousin for sending this to me from Penn State.

Peace and Blessings,

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Seattle Great Wheel Turns Teal

The Seattle Great Wheel is a hometown favorite, not just because it's lighting displays are so colorful, but also due to the company's contribution to the Seattle community. 

After my treatment last week I went down to the Wheel, it was  pure TEAL.  As you may be aware, September is ovarian and gynecological cancer awareness month.  Being able to benefit from this beautiful display of color makes us happy. 

The folks at The Seattle Great Wheel care.

I have been exhausted and extremely scatter-brained. For example, I have actually misplaced purchased groceries three times in the last 2 months.  I am overheated all the time. My hands have not really worked well for almost a year now.

I just stumble along doing my best to make a difference.

Thank you Seattle Great Wheel.

Please share this with 100 will make a difference.

I hope you enjoy the ride and the beautiful view.


annotations will not show when viewing from an Ipad, so sorry

Saturday, September 06, 2014

Pierce Brosnan : Joining Our Forces To Disarm Ovarian Cancer

Pierce Brosnan shared with the nation a few hours ago the enormous pain and suffering he and his family endured due to ovarian cancer.  He lost both his loving wife and adoring daughter to this terrible disease.  

He stepped on stage during the Stand Up 2 Cancer Event on 09-05-14 with hopeful eyes and an urgent voice.  He brought with him a powerful message.  A message that the three most powerful non-profit organizations dedicated to ending ovarian cancer are teaming up to save lives.  

I feel confident and empowered.  I hope you feel the same.

Please watch this moving You Tube video clip and go to the OCRF website for their important press release and details about this unprecedented movement in ovarian cancer research.

I pray for his family and the souls of his dearly dearly departed wife and daughter.

Peace and Blessings,


"Our First Ovarian Cancer Dream Team" Pierce Brosnan 09-05-14 <link>

New Stand Up To Cancer Ovarian Cancer Dream Team Announced

su2c logo

Ovarian Cancer Community Joins Forces to Fight Deadliest Gynecologic Cancer

A groundbreaking collaboration among three national ovarian cancer organizations was announced during the Stand Up to Cancer telecast on Friday evening, September 5th. Ovarian Cancer Research Fund (OCRF), Ovarian Cancer National Alliance (OCNA), and National Ovarian Cancer Coalition (NOCC) have teamed up with Stand Up To Cancer to fund a new Translational Research Ovarian Cancer Dream Team dedicated to piloting leading-edge ovarian cancer research that will help patients and save lives. Read the full press release here.

Ovarian Cancer Research Fund is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization.© 2012 Copyright Ovarian Cancer Research Fund. All Rights Reserved


Thursday, September 04, 2014

N.E.D. The Movie And My Thoughts About This Special Time

Benefit Screening of Film Documentary:  N.E.D.   No Evidence of Disease

90,000 women will be diagnosed with a GYN cancer this year, and unfortunately one-third of them will die.  Often patients will say, “I didn’t know,” referring to the signs and symptoms, which often go unnoticed and undiagnosed until it is too late.  That is why it is so important for a film like No Evidence of Disease to be seen by a large audience.

Please join me for a special one-time screening of No Evidence ofDisease on Sunday, September 28 at the Edmonds Theatre. Proceeds from this screening will be donated to the nonprofit FORCE (Facing our Risk of Cancer Empowered Please help get the word out about this film.  Making vital information about this intimidating subject accessible is no easy task, but No Evidence of Diseasethrough a compelling combination of storytelling and music, accomplishes it.

You can purchase tickets for this event at:

In 2008, six cancer surgeons from around the country discovered their shared passion for medicine extended to music.  What began as a one-time gig playing cover songs for fellow surgeons turned into a rock band, named for the words every cancer patient dreams of hearing, No Evidence of Disease (N.E.D).

The award-winning documentary of the same name, No Evidence ofDisease, interweaves the harrowing experiences and remarkable courage of women, devoted families, and these dedicated musician-doctors. As music and medicine join forces in the fight for life, the surgeons are transformed into rising rock stars, and their patients and loved ones jump on the bandwagon, infusing the struggle for survival with heart, hope and Rock ‘n’ Roll.

Check out the trailer for the film here  The film was also featured in U.S. News and World Report:

It would be wonderful to see you in the audience, and please help me spread the wordThis is an opportunity to spend time with friends whilecreating life-saving awareness of this disease.  Your presence will have an exponential effect – the best tool for us to save lives is knowledge, and this screening is a great way to get it.
Deborah Binder
DX OVCA June, 2009 and currently “dancing with NED”
Questions? Contact me at 425-361-3942 or

Hello From sunny Seattle!

I am typing this section of my post with the new Hanx Writer app on my ipad.  To be honest, this is really fun.  I love the clickity clack and zingy sounds.  It Brings me me back in time.  High school typing class, white-out, correction ribbon and lots of do-overs come to mind. I am not the best typist.  So I am really happy that our most adorable fan favorite, one of my favorite actors, Tom Hanks, created this for me and you.

Well, speaking of entertainers, I have an exciting event to tell you about.  One of our sisters, Deborah Binder, is hosting an benefit up in Edmonds called "N.E.D. The Movie".

N.E.D. stands for "no evidence of disease". A state of N.E.D. is every cancer patient's dream.  It represents a time before we are "cured".

For me, while in front line chemo, I relied on faith to get me there, along with family and friends, but truth being told, I was not prepared. I prayed as often as I could but in the back of my mind, I needed to see it to believe it. I was N.E.D. for about 2 years, which is a gift from God.  Now I remain in my first recurrence.

Our N.E.D. time is precious and often fleeting. Make a plan!

I did not feel well enough to travel, and like everyone else, responsibilities of real life become more pressing as we make a valiant effort to get back to normal.  Insurance, medical leave and expenses demand that we get back to work.

I am all for a law that provides for at least 90 days of recovery during N.E.D. Going through aggressive cancer treatment is a full time job so getting a true vacation from cancer and stress would improve the recovery process, in my mind.  Ok, enough politics.

Make a plan and get the support of your family and friends.  It is up to us to lead this and let people know that when we reach N.E.D. we want and need to reward ourselves, and honor those who have helped us along the way.  

It is so difficult to make a plan when we are in a chemo cloud of pain, nausea, brain fog and legitimate uncertainty.  Sometimes all we need is a weekend of fun, or a mini trip to a favorite getaway.  Maybe it is a quiet celebration with loved ones. The months of N.E.D. are a treasure, a time when we get to visualize our lives as living with a greater purpose, with more urgency.

So while we are figuring out work and other day to day priorities, set aside time every day for your spiritual, creative and empowered self.  Do what you love if at all possible.

Celebrate this special time and communicate to others that although the treatments have stopped, our bodies, your body, needs time to heal.  It may take a few months or even years.  Allow them to process that this time of healing can take extra time, so ask for their patience.

Please visit the quaint city of Edmonds on 09-28-14 for this special event!  I will see you there!

Peace and blessings,

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

A Reassuring Voice For Women, Dr. Heidi Gray

Dr. Heidi Gray of SCCA Symptoms and Risk Factors  (Video Link)

Dr. Heidi Gray on Symptoms of Ovarian Cancer

heidi-grayEarlier this week Dr. Heidi Gray, a gynecologic oncologist at SCCA, was interviewed on KIXI’s Chat With Women about the symptoms of ovarian cancer. Ovarian cancer has been long thought to be a silent killer whose symptoms are non-existent. Dr. Gray, however, points out that most women who have ovarian cancer do have symptoms, it’s just that they are “vague” and often confused with something else. In the interview Dr. Gray spells out what women should watch for and also speaks to treatment options for patients who have been diagnosed with ovarian and other gynecologic cancers. You can listen to Dr. Gray’s interview here (it’s in the “Chat With Women 04-23-13” archive—Dr. Gray’s segment starts at 32:00 minutes).
For more information about the symptoms and risk factors for ovarian cancer, see the SCCA website.
    This entry was posted in Cancer ScreeningGeneral. Bookmark the permalinkPost a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.
    I met Dr. Heidi Gray in October of 2009.  She has kept me alive!  My deepest gratitude to her, her nurses and staff at the SCCA and The University of Washington Medical Center.

    Click below for information about a brand new clinical trial at the SCCA:
    Peace and Blessings,