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Ovarian Cancer: The Silent Killer

Summary: Ovarian cancer is projected to kill more than 14,000 women this year. But if you don't have a family history, how do you know if you're at risk?
Air Date: 9/13/13
Duration: 10
Host: Dr. Leigh Vinocur
Guest Bio: Dr. Robin Lacour
Dr. Robin Lacour graduated from medical school at Louisiana State University’s Health Sciences Center in Shreveport. From there, she moved to Dallas for a residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Parkland Hospital. After residency, Dr. Lacour pursued sub-specialty training during a four-year fellowship in Gynecologic Oncology at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. She continued her medical education at the University of Texas School of Public Health in Houston, where she earned an MPH-Epidemiology. During her academic career, Dr. Lacour was lauded with many honors and scholarships, including the Linda K. Manning Fellowship in Ovarian Cancer in May of 2008.

She is a candidate member of the Society of Gynecologic Oncologists and a member of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology and the American Society of Clinical Oncology. Dr. Lacour joined Willis-Knighton Gynecologic Oncology Associates in 2010. She has also been appointed as an Assistant Professor of Gynecologic Oncology at LSU Health Sciences Center in Shreveport, where she participates in the training of physicians and medical students.
Ovarian Cancer: The Silent Killer
Ovarian cancer is called the silent killer, projected to kill more than 14,000 women this year.

While genetic testing and family history can play a role in the possibility of developing ovarian cancer, the truth is that gene abnormalities only account for 10-15% of all cases. The other 85-90% of patients develop the cancer simply by chance.

Unfortunately, the symptoms for ovarian cancer - unless you have a family history and are actively watching for them, or being screened regularly - are often undetectable until the cancer has spread to other parts of the body. Instances of bloating, nausea, and loss of appetite often only show up after the cancer has spread.

The typical screening mechanism for ovarian cancer is a pelvic exam, usually performed by your OB-GYN each year. If you've had a family history, you may opt for tests like the CA-125 blood test or an ultrasound. Recently, developments in the way the CA-125 test is conducted have allowed for a closer monitoring of the disease.

Special guest, Dr. Robin Lacour, joins Dr. Leigh to discuss important information about ovarian cancer, including, the encouraging advances in regards to testing.