Lifestyle

Team Sussex kicks off Swedish SummeRun

Team Sussex members include, from left, Marilyn Dierickx, Cori Nickerson, Kerry Sussex, Dr. Saul Rivkin, Erica Sussex and Jodie West. - Contributed Photo
Team Sussex members include, from left, Marilyn Dierickx, Cori Nickerson, Kerry Sussex, Dr. Saul Rivkin, Erica Sussex and Jodie West.
— image credit: Contributed Photo

Longtime Islander, Kerry Sussex, has been battling advanced ovarian cancer now for over three years since she was diagnosed in May 2007. She is under the tireless care of Islander Dr. Henry Kaplan, along with many other specialists. She has been in and out of chemotherapy, procedures and surgeries the entire time, and yet manages to show the rest of us only courage, a great attitude and how to live each day to the fullest. She continues to work as a realtor at John L. Scott along with her business partner, Bonnie Sanborn. She is a wife and mother, and recently became a grandmother for the first time. Her energy and generous spirit have inspired so many to do a little more and to give a little more.

Ovarian cancer, the deadliest of all gynecologic cancers, affects thousands of women and their families. Each year, approximately 20,000 American women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer, many with late stage cancer that has already spread. The long-term disease-free survival rate for advanced ovarian cancer is only 10 percent. Sussex is a fighter, and she intends to be part of that 10 percent. She thrives on the support of her friends, family and the Mercer Island community.

Sussex and her friends want you to join their team in the fight against ovarian cancer by signing up to walk, run and/or donate to Team Sussex for the Swedish SummeRun 2010.

This year’s event will be held on Sunday, July 25. All funds raised benefit the Marsha Rivkin Center for Ovarian Cancer Research. Founded by Islander and renowned Swedish Cancer Institute medical oncologist Saul E. Rivkin, M.D., in memory of his wife, who lost her life to ovarian cancer, the Marsha Rivkin Center is a joint partnership with Swedish Medical Center and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Dr. Rivkin said that researchers are drawing ever closer to a feasible method for regular screening of healthy women for ovarian cancer. Approximately $2.2 billion is spent in the United States each year on treatment for ovarian cancer.

Sign up now

To register for the Swedish SummeRun 2010, visit www.summerun.org and click on ‘Participate.’

For more information on Team Sussex, contact co-captains Cori Nickerson at (206) 755-2535 or Marilyn Dierickx at (206) 669-2120.

Ovarian cancer facts

The American Cancer Society reports that there were 21,550 new cases of ovarian cancer in the United States in 2009 and 14,600 deaths from ovarian cancer. It is the ninth most common cancer among women not counting skin cancer, and it is the fifth most likely to cause cancer death among women.

About half of those diagnosed with ovarian cancer are 60 or older, according to the American Cancer Society. The chances of a woman getting ovarian cancer in her lifetime are one in 71.

Early detection of ovarian cancer increases the chances of survival, with nine out of 10 women treated early living more than five years after their diagnosis. So far, there is no effective test for detecting ovarian cancer, though women can have surgery to remove their ovaries. Using blood samples, researchers are trying to detect blood protein patterns among women who have ovarian cancer.

See your doctor if you experience any of these for more than three weeks:

• Abdominal bloating

• Vague but persistent gastrointestinal complaints

• Change in bowel habits

• Frequency in urination

• Unexplained weight gain or loss

• Abnormal vaginal bleeding

For more, go to www.seattlecca.org.

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