Cancer is a lethal terminal illness that only a few survive. Scientists and specialists are constantly keeping up with clinical tests and employing new innovations and technology fuelled by thorough research and development to speed ahead of the disease and save millions of lives. However, sometimes, destiny has other plans.
According to People, a 29-year-old California woman, in an interview with Today.com, shared her journey with ovarian cancer, the symptoms of which began when she was 25 years old. She revealed that at the time, she felt an unusual pain on her left side, and a scan revealed Schlamm, now 29, had a mass that doctors said was a “borderline tumor,” it was removed along with her ovary.
She explained her story, “I pushed and pushed and pushed because I was getting worried. I (didn’t) love the idea of anything that was growing in my body that wasn’t supposed to be there.” Before this discovery, Emma Schlamm said she had visited several doctors, and when she deliberated concern over fertility loss, she felt incredibly “dismissive'” by the doctors who conducted her checkup.
People reported via the interview that a year later, Schlaam was suddenly diagnosed with “a full-fledged low-grade serous ovarian cancer,” which was an overwhelming diagnosis for her. She recollected, “I blacked out for most of the conversation,” adding, “I don’t remember a lot of it. I’ve never heard my mom wail like that, the guttural kind of primal cry she let out.”
People reports that according to the International Journal of Gynecological Cancer, a “low-grade serous carcinoma of the ovary or peritoneum is a less frequent epithelial ovarian cancer type that is poorly sensitive to chemotherapy and affects younger women, many of whom endure years of ineffective treatments and poor quality of life.”
Additionally, according to the American Cancer Society, Symptoms of ovarian cancer can include bloating, pelvic and abdominal pain, and urinary urgency. Schlamm recalled that she froze her eggs and underwent a total of 18 rounds of chemotherapy as well as surgery to remove her remaining ovary. She revealed to Today.com that although she is on an aromatase inhibitor, her “grief” is profound, with the feeling of having lost her “youth and vibrance and vitality.” One of the collateral symptoms of the heavy dose of medication results in osteoporosis, which is not a good sign for her health.
People reported that Schlamm, who is a board member of the STAAR Ovarian Cancer Foundation, states that although there is no trace of the disease in her body at the moment, she fears the moment she needs to go for another scan. She reveals, “That’s the hardest part of all this, living with the fear of recurrence because the numbers are just so defeating,” adding, “I try to do what I can, stay active and healthy. It makes me feel like I have some control over my body.”