Tester recognizes National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month
(KALISPELL, Mont.) - Senator Jon Tester is recognizing September as National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month as part of his fight to improve the health of Montana women.
Ovarian cancer, which takes the lives of more than 15,000 women nationwide each year, is the fifth-most deadly cancer for women. There are nearly 100 new cases in Montana each year.
Tester, who backed the bipartisan Senate resolution that designates September as National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month, said more progress is needed to help women detect and fight back against the deadly disease.
"We haven't seen the same kind of progress in the battle against ovarian cancer that we've seen against other forms of cancer," said Tester, who today toured the Flathead Valley Community Health Center. "Raising greater awareness of ovarian cancer is just one way we can help women look for symptoms and take steps to detect the disease early on."
Early detection of ovarian cancer greatly increases a woman's chances for survival, but only 20 percent of cases are diagnosed early. There is no reliable early detection test for ovarian cancer, making it critical for women to recognize symptoms like pelvic or abdominal pain and urinary changes.
Tester's bipartisan resolution calls for the development of a reliable early detection test.
Tester, a member of the Senate Cancer Coalition, also recently backed a bipartisan bill that establishes a 10-person commission to examine new strategies to defeat breast cancer by 2020 and got the Defense Department to once again cover a breast cancer test known as "BRCA." The simple blood test uses DNA analysis to identify changes to genes that increase the likelihood of cancer.