News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 

Running with a message

Running with a message

After becoming all too familiar with the symptoms of ovarian cancer, Morrinsville veterinarian and mother Angela McEwan wants to spread the word further. In December she will run the 60 kilometre Kepler Challenge to raise awareness of a disease that can be hard to recognise.

The motivation is personal - Angela’s sister Suzee is currently in advanced stages of ovarian cancer, after receiving a delayed diagnosis.

Kepler Challenge takes place on Te Anau’s mountainous Kepler Track on December 7th 2013 and is one of NZ’s premier trail races. It also has personal connections for Angela. “Growing up in Southland the Kepler Challenge has always had a level of magnetism about it amongst runners. It seemed appropriate to go back to where my sister and I grew up to take on this challenge and awareness campaign.”

Angela’s goal for the campaign is for more women to be aware of the symptoms of ovarian cancer, in time to improve their chances. One woman dies from ovarian cancer every 48 hours in New Zealand, and it is the fourth most common cancer in the country.

Suzee was initially ill for some time with vague symptoms of tiredness, bloating, and abdominal pain, says Angela. “As is often the case with women with ovarian cancer it was misdiagnosed as irritable bowel syndrome and stress. It was only when her cancer was advanced ovarian cancer that she was correctly diagnosed. Unfortunately, far too many women with ovarian cancer have a similar story".

It is common for women with ovarian cancer to be misdiagnosed with more common less serious health matters, she says, and it’s important to be assertive. “Women need to be aware of the main symptoms of ovarian cancer so they can make sure their doctor takes their condition seriously and makes an accurate diagnosis. As women, we know when something is wrong. Ask your doctor to do the tests that rule ovarian cancer out. These tests can be found on the website below. If women remain concerned after seeing a doctor, they should seek a second opinion.”

Although Angela has a running and multisport background, preparing for the race has proved difficult at times. “Fitting everything in around looking after a newborn baby, work, and general life has been challenging. We have a roster so both Steve and I can look after Thomas and fit our training in. The recent long runs of 3-4 hours, often in the cold and dark, got harder, not easier, and mental toughness became my biggest barrier.” The family live at the base of Mt Te Aroha, which has been useful for hill running.

“Just having a sick sister has been challenging too. Getting out and training can be difficult when I'm tired and stressed, but I know I am always better for it. Fortunately I've managed to avoid any major injuries thanks to the good work of Dale McClunie Massage.” She has also had apparel support from New Balance.

Most frequent symptoms:

Persistent pelvic and abdominal pain

Increased abdominal size and persistent bloating

Difficulty eating and feeling full quickly

Sometimes these symptoms may occur on their own or at the same time:

Change in bowel habits

Extreme tiredness

Urinary symptoms

Back pain

A smear test will not detect ovarian cancer.

For more information on Ovarian Cancer, visit http://www.ocanz.org.nz/about-ovarian-cancer.html

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 


Howard Davis: Emerald Fennell's Promising Young Woman'


The Guardian needed not one, but three reviews to do justice to Fennell's unsettling approach, which indicates exactly how ambiguous and controversial its message really is. More>>


Howard Davis: Jill Trevelyan's Rita Angus

Although Angus has become one of Aotearoa’s best-loved painters, the story of her life remained little known and poorly understood before Jill Trevelyan's acclaimed and revelatory biography, which won the Non Fiction Award at the Montana New Zealand Book Awards in 2009, and has now been republished by Te Papa press. More>>

Howard Davis: The Back of the Painting

Painting conservators are the forensic pathologists of the art world. While they cannot bring their subjects back to life, they do provide fascinating insights into the precise circumstances of a painting's creation, its material authenticity, and constructive methodology. More>>


Howard Davis: Black Panthers on the Prowl

A passionate and gripping political drama from Shaka King, this is an informative and instructive tale of human frailty that centers around the charismatic Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, who was murdered at the age of twenty-one during a police raid. More>>

Howard Davis: Controlling the High Ground

Stephen Johnson's raw and angry film not only poses important questions with scrupulous authenticity, but also provides a timely reminder of the genocidal consequences of casual bigotry and xenophobia. More>>

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>


Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland