Health News

September 18, 2018

Comprehensive, State-of-the-Art Cancer Care for Women

One in eight women will develop breast cancer during her lifetime. Ovarian cancer is the fifth most common cause of cancer-related deaths among women. You may have heard these numbers before, but if you’re diagnosed with cancer, the only statistic that matters is you.

Experts with Summit Medical Group MD Anderson Cancer Center take a multidisciplinary team approach to developing and carrying out your treatment plan when you are diagnosed with breast or ovarian cancer.

“Most importantly, each patient is looked at as an individual,” says Darlene Gibbon, MD, Director of Gynecologic Oncology at Summit Medical Group MD Anderson Cancer Center. “Your treatment plan is developed with you—and only you—in mind.”

Thanks to Summit Medical Group’s (SMG) partnership with MD Anderson Cancer Center, the leading cancer center in the nation, patients have access to world-renowned treatment protocols, select clinical trials, and cutting-edge research.

“The Cancer Center enables patients to receive the full spectrum of their care, including surgery, medical oncology, radiation, and more, with one team in one place, which ensures continuity of care throughout treatment and beyond,” says William Diehl, MD, Director of the Summit Medical Group Breast Care Center, which offers comprehensive care and support for all stages of breast cancer, as well as for benign conditions.

WHAT YOU CAN DO

While Summit Medical Group MD Anderson has all the latest advancements available for diagnosing and treating cancer, there are steps you can take to reduce your odds of developing breast or ovarian cancer, or to detect them early when they’re most treatable.

“A common misconception is that ovarian cancer doesn’t have any symptoms, but there are actually several signs that women should watch for,” Dr. Gibbon says. They include:

  • Bloating
  • Pelvic or abdominal pain
  • Changes in appetite or feeling full quickly
  • Urgent need to urinate
  • Constipation
  • Menstrual changes
  • Postmenopausal vaginal bleeding

“Having any of these signs doesn’t necessarily mean that you have cancer, but if they persist for three weeks or more, you should contact your primary care physician or gynecologist to have them investigated further,” explains Dr. Gibbon.

Currently, there are no screening tests available for ovarian cancer. Identifying early warning signs and talking with your doctor about genetic testing if you have a strong family history of breast or ovarian cancer are your most powerful tools for early detection.