Ovarian cancer survivor: Why I travel for a clinical trial

Ovarian cancer symptoms can be rather vague – bloating, a feeling of fullness and/or constipation. But Diane Sarver didn’t have any of these. “I had a little fluid in the left side of my neck that a physical therapist noticed. She suggested I have it checked out,” she recalls. Diane, who works in a hospital in Oregon, had a biopsy that led to a stage IV ovarian cancer diagnosis in January 2010. “Nobody thought it could be that, especially with the appearance of the fluid only and the absence of pelvic symptoms,” she says. “I have no history of cancer on either side of my family, and I was perfectly healthy.” A round of chemotherapy put Diane into remission. But two and a half years later, she had her first ovarian cancer recurrence. When she had two more recurrences within two and a half years, Diane decided to investigate other options. Traveling for ovarian cancer treatment A friend of Diane’s knew a researcher at MD Anderson, so she made a phone call and found out there were clinical trials for which she may be a good candidate. “I had heard many MD Anderson success stories, so even though it’s not close to me, I decided to pursue it,” Diane says. “It takes quite a bit of travel time to get to Houston from Oregon, but when you have the opportunity to potentially be on a life-saving clinical trial, the travel becomes manageable and part of a welcome routine.” Choosing a clinical trial At MD Anderson, Diane joined a Phase IB trial that’s part of our Ovarian Cancer Moon Shot™....