ovarian cancer

Raw Cucumber Side Salad – Raw Food Day 3

Raw Cucumber Side Salad – Raw Food Day 3 VIDEO BLOGHello!
So after my video post yesterday, a few of you have been asking for some of my recipes and I thought the easiest way would be to create a video of me making one of them…I need some practice as things get messy! Hahahaha!

For this recipe you will need:

  • A cucumber. 
  • A piece of ginger (skin on). 
  • Apple Cider Vinegar (you can also use balsamic). 
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil. 
  • Miso Paste. (Miss this out if you are strict raw). 
  • Honey. (Miss this out if you are strict vegan).
  • Seeds – I use sunflower and pumpkin seeds (unroasted!) 

I’ve said it already, but I’ll say it again. I am not a believer of following a strict and compromised diet just so I can say I am ‘raw’ or so I can say I am ‘vegan’. I am all about eating the healthiest and most nutritious food. So there is honey in this dish (not vegan) because it is super great for your health. There is also miso paste (not raw) as it has many nutritious benefits. As ever, do what is right for you and with a focus on your optimal health. 
Buy organic wherever possible.
Let me know what you think of the recipe and share your ideas with me too.
Love and light, Fi xxx

Follow me on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
⭐️I’ve been shortlisted for ‘The Health Blogger of the Year’. ⭐️

It would be super awesome if you could head here and vote to help me win.

In August 2017 I published a book about my story and how I strive to live an incredible life with stage four (‘terminal’) cancer — Love, Light and Mermaid Tails: One Woman’s Healing Journey Back to Wholeness Through Stage Four Cancer is now available to buy in UK and USA on Amazon.

health, ovarian cancer, yoga

Raw Food for Post Cancer Holistic Health – Day One

Hello and happy Tuesday!
I’ve been thinking over my health lately and realised that it’s not quite where I want it to be…it’s been nearly 18months since I was diagnosed with stage four cancer and after months of being sugar free, vegan (except for occasional fish) and not eating processed food (plus 8 years of being gluten free) I still feel my diet isn’t optimal.

This weekend I went away with my family and found myself slipping easily into old habits of sugar and processed food. Not where I want to be at all!

The result? Today I woke feeling sluggish, tired and all in all a bit ‘meh’. And my skin has broken out again too! Eeek!

So what to do?

Well, after months of researching I’ve decided to embrace a raw food diet under the belief that live food is best for our health.

Now, let’s get one things clear, I’m not doing this for weight loss! I am a happy and healthy size 10/12 and I walk/practice yoga/run ever day. This is about achieving optimal health and helping my body to heal from the inside out.

So, today begins my journey with raw food. I’m under no illusions that it will be easy but hey, it can’t be as bad as high dose chemotherapy and major surgery can it?

I’m a complete novice so I’ve decided to share my story with you all in a ‘video diary’. If you have any advice or tips please let me know!

Here goes!

Love and light, Fi xx
Follow me on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

⭐️VOTING IS NOW OPEN!⭐️

I’ve been shortlisted for ‘The Health Blogger of the Year’. It would be super awesome if you could head here and vote to help me win.

You don’t need to provide any details (not even your name!), you just have to tick a box!

The winner receives a prize of £600 and if I win then I pledge to use it all for my random act of kindness to help spread more joy and raise awareness for ovarian cancer!
With your help I can reach more people and help to spread awareness of ovarian cancer; living with stage four cancer; invisible disabilities and so much more! 💜💜💜

New to my page? In Jan 2016 , at the age of just 30, I was diagnosed with non-genetic, stage four ovarian cancer. There is no stage five. Since then I’ve been campaigning to raise awareness of ovarian cancer in the hope that my diagnosis will help save lives. I have been handing out random acts of kindness to strangers as envelopes containing £20 and a card with the symptoms of ovarian cancer. I do this in the hope of spreading kindness and joy whilst also helping to get people to take about ovarian cancer! 💜⭐️🌈

In August 2017 I published a book entitled “Love, Light and Mermaid Tails” about my story and how I strive to live an incredible life with ‘terminal’ cancer. Get it here.

ovarian cancer

Chase Your Dreams 

I could have missed my run today. I could have looked at the bad weather and thought ‘nah I’ll stay in tonight’.

But instead I remembered the old me, the me lying in a hospital bed after surgery to remove half my organs. The me with stage four cancer fighting for her life. The me that would have given anything to be able to walk across the room unaided.

So I got into my running gear and I went for a run.

Was it tough? Absolutely!

But was it worth it realising how incredible my body is, how wonderfully well it has healed and how powerful it is to not only recover from cancer but to be able to run in the rain? Hell yeah!

I used to run to burn calories. I used to run to lose weight. I used to run to beat my personal best. Now I run for the old me. I run for my fellow warriors to show them that anything is possible. I run for health. I run for my future self! I run so that when I next see my oncologist I can tell her how amazing I feel!

I don’t know how far I ran. I don’t know how fast I ran. I don’t know how many calories I burnt. And I don’t care! What I do know is that I did something I once thought I’d never be able to do and that is the best feeling in the world!

Tonight I will be celebrating with a curry at a friend’s house – not because I ‘earned it’ but because life is too short to worry how many calories you eat as long as you are eating the right food! The main word being ‘food’ – not highly processed or ‘low fat’ bullsh*t!

Have a great weekend everyone! Go and do something you once only dreamed of!

Love and light, Fi xx

—-

You can now buy my new book on Amazon – “Love, Light and Mermaid Tails”

ovarian cancer

My Book is Now Available to Buy

It’s been an exciting week! I’ve finally achieved my life long dream of becoming an author and published my first book!

It is currently available to buy on Amazon in the UK, USA and Europe!

‘Using her values as a compass Fi shares a message of hope, not fear, about how you can heal your life even if you can’t be cured. A powerful message for us all.’ Lesley Howells, Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Centre Head, Maggie’s

I’m giving away a free signed book over the weekend 🌈🦄💕🙏🏻 Please just visit my Facebook page for more info 🦄

Thank you everyone for your support and encouragement. I couldn’t have done this without you!

I hope you enjoy the book!

Love and light, Fi xxx

—-

“Fi Munro was diagnosed with non-genetic stage four ovarian cancer. In that moment, after months of pain, tests and assurances that it was ‘nothing to worry about’, her instincts were proved right and her worst fears were realised.

In the months that followed, understanding her diagnosis, recovery and health became her full time job.

Using her expertise as a researcher she dedicated her time to understanding everything she could about her diagnosis and subsequent prognosis.

In this honest, open and often tear-jerking account of her journey back to wholeness, Fi openly shares her story from diagnosis with stage four ‘terminal’ cancer to living an incredible, healthy life full of joy and laughter.

This book is a guide for anyone, not just those with cancer, who wants to embrace a happier, healthier and more caring approach to their life.

May it bring you peace, courage and, above all, hope.”

“Fi Munro (PhD) is a multi award winning researcher, author and public speaker recognised internationally for her presentations and articles on her journey and holistic health. She has been featured in two BBC documentaries, in TV and radio shows, and in newspaper and magazine articles across the globe.”

ovarian cancer, yoga

Follow Your Bliss

Today I achieved one of my life long dreams I couldn’t be more proud.


As many of you know, in May 2016 I underwent major surgery for stage four ovarian cancer during which I had multiple organs removed. The recovery was tough and involved a week in a high dependency unit and almost two months in hospital whilst I regained enough strength to walk, recovered from sepsis in my liver and adjusted to life with a colostomy bag.


At the time I was told it could be several months before I was even able to walk up stairs or bend down and my husband moved our bedroom downstairs into our dinning room in preparation for my return home.

Not one to be defeated I, perhaps crazily, decided this was the time to pursue my dream of becoming a yoga teaching and so, with the support of my oncologist, I approached a yoga training school.

Just weeks later I was sat in a cafe having an interview with the course leader. I was convinced she would be put off by my medical situation and turn me away however, miraculously, she took a chance on me and in early September 2016 I started a 12 month training course. 

I had a PhD by the age of 26 so I am not shy of a little hard work but what followed was, at times, the hardest education journey of my life. Physically weak from surgery, emotionally and mentally drained from chemo, I constantly struggled to keep up with my wonderful classmates. Each month we would have coursework to complete, postures and adjustments to learn and, of course, hours of yoga practice. We not only studied yoga but also pranayama (breathing), chakras, meditation, nutrition, yoga philosophy and so much more! 

Each weekend of training left me exhausted and requiring often days to recover but I loved every single second. My monthly yoga training weekends became key milestones for me. Getting through two days of training reminded me how alive I was and how incredibly well I was doing despite everything my body had been through.


My physical, emotional and spiritual health responded and my holistically health drastically improved as a result. Now, a war after finishing chemo my cancer markers are low and stable and I have never felt more alive.

Today after what could have been the worst year of my life I completed my yoga training and received my full qualification.

I have never been more proud of myself and hope that my story will inspire others to never give up on their dreams because if you just believe in yourself and you keep taking tiny steps in the right direction then anything is possible!

If I can train as a yoga instructor whilst living with and being treated for stage four ovarian cancer then just think what you can achieve.

Follow your bliss and magic happens!


With special thanks to the wonderful, inspiring and supportive people who trained alongside me; to the course leaders and trainers who took a chance on me and to everyone who has supported my yoga business. You have all played a massive part in making my dreams come true and I am forever grateful.

Love and light, Fi xxx

Find Fi on Facebook.

kindness, ovarian cancer

RAOK – Paying it Forward 

I delivered another Random Act of Kindness today. It is honestly still my favourite thing to do! This one was extra special though as it came from someone else…

Despite the fact that I am meant to be resting I needed to go and order new glasses as I broke mine teaching kids yoga. Yes I know, if I’d been resting they wouldn’t have got broken…blah blah…

Anyway…I used to work in my local opticians so I let them know I’d be popping by. One of the women that works there reads my Facebook (**waves**) and so she dropped me a message to tell me to say hi when I was in.

This I did and I’m so glad! She is without doubt one of the loveliest souls I’ve ever met. No I’m not just saying that because she will read this! She welcomed me with a warm and enthusiastic hug like no other and then surprised me by giving me a ‘random act of kindess’ envelope with money inside and asked me to ‘pass it on’.

I was so touched! I love when other people join in!

Leaving the shop I was still smiling when I went to buy some ‘jeggings’ – I hate that word but basically I need jeans with legging tops now I have a colostomy bag…anyway I’m going off topic (again!)

So I was trying them on and while doing so I could hear two friends chatting through the curtain of the cubicle next to me.

Their utter joy and laughter was infectious! From their ensthusiastic batter I gathered that one was helping the other buy a selection of clothes for various up coming events. What struck me was their passion. The one trying on the clothes was so unashamedly grateful for her friend’s help. Lsughing loudly she kept thanking her and declaring that she had ‘never looked so good’ and ‘couldn’t wait to show people’. The whole dialogue screamed LOVE!

I was really touched and knew straight away that I’d have to give them the envelope I’d just been passed moments before.

As I left I slipped the envelope into one of their hands and was met with the usual look of confusion and a mumbled ‘thankyou’ which, when combined, always translates  as ‘who the f*ck is this crazy woman handing me an envelope’.

As ever, it gave me so much joy and I hope the ladies got as much out of it as I did. I just love being able to pass on acts of kindness in this way.

So, tell your friends you love them;  be unashamedly you; and scatter kindness around wherever you go!

Oh and always remember you are beautiful!

Love and light, Fi xxx

ovarian cancer

HEALTH UPDATE

During my last checkup my oncologist explained that my cancer markers have risen. Last month they tripled and this month they went up a little bit more. They are now at the top of ‘healthy’. However, this may indicate that treatment did not get rid of all disease as we originally thought.She asked if I wanted a scan to see where the cancer was. However, this gave me the opportunity to have an honest chat and tell her that I don’t want to have chemo again.

This is for a number of personal reasons but one is because the toxicity would cause further damage to my kidneys and make my magnesium issue worse.

You may think this is minor, however, my Hypomagnesemia is actually very serious and, along with the debilitating side affects I have often posted here, worsening my situation could cause irritability of the nervous system with risk of tremors, seizures, cardiac arrest, coma, intellectual disability or death [to name a few].

After an open discussion, during which I was treated as an equal part in the decisions made, my oncologist explained that she supports my decision. She agreed that further chemo would make my Hypomagnesemia worse. This would be very detrimental to my health and possibly remove all quality of life which, I’m sure you know, is very important to me.

Also, at this stage my diagnosis is medically ‘incurable’ and further chemo would not make a significant difference to my life expectancy. We are talking an extra couple of months and, for me, that’s not worth the price of my quality of life.

So we have agreed that she will no longer monitor my cancer markers and that I won’t get scanned. There is no point.

However, the main thing is that just now I feel well and healthy aside from a stabbing pain in my right ribs which has been ongoing for a few months…and, annoyingly, worse today.

My positivity hasn’t wavered, my hope isn’t diminished and above all my joy still overflows! 

I will keep on LIVING and spreading kindness and positivity for as long as my heart keeps beating.

I encourage you to do the same.

Love and light xxx

Ps. This is what stage four cancer looks like #ButYouLookSoWell 💕💜😘

ovarian cancer

Remission 

This week I was told I am in remisison!


This post summarises my holistic journey so far and the next steps going forward…

In January 2016 I was diagnosed with stage four ovarian cancer.

Due to the cancer spreading into my chest cavity and sitting on my right lung (confirmed by a horrendous biopsy!) I was told that my cancer may be inoperable.

A decision about whether or not I could have an operation was to be made following my first two chemotherapy treatments.

I started chemotherapy two weeks later.

At this time I was unable to walk around the block without collapsing; I was so weak from pain, abdominal fluid and the stress my cancer was putting my frail body under.

So, in support of my cancer treatment (which I know would only make me weaker) I also started to make many lifestyle changes:-

  • Daily Himalayan salt baths
  • Daily exercise
  • Signed off work
  • Reduced/illuminated stress
  • Daily meditation
  • In nature daily
  • No sugar
  • No dairy
  • Minimal meat
  • 8-10 veg a day
  • Only drinking water
  • No processed food
  • No alcohol
  • Natural makeup
  • Coconut oil as makeup remover
  • Coconut oil as moisturiser
  • Drinking at least 2ltrs per day
  • Vegetables at every meal
  • Started seeing a therapist
  • Took control of my health and situation
  • Accepted my diagnosis
  • Had a veg juice every day
  • Daily yoga
  • Built up my strength until I was able to walk 2-3 miles daily
  • Min 2 hours outdoors each day
  • Made all food from scratch – including my cereal
  • Daily homemade ginger juice

Within a month I started to feel much stronger, despite the side affects of my cancer treatment (which is brutal!)

I benefited from:

  • Better sleep
  • Better skin
  • No bloating
  • No pain – stopping pain relief

After two rounds of chemotherapy I was given a second scan. This showed that there was no longer cancer on my lung or in my chest cavity and I was approved for radical, major surgery.

I had a third round of chemotherapy before my operation in May 2016.

My operation took over 11 hours to complete, during which time they removed:

  • my cervix
  • my womb
  • my ovaries
  • my right fallopian tube (I only had one prior to surgery due to a previous operation)
  • my omentum
  • my appendix
  • my spleen
  • part of my colon (resulting in a colostomy bag)
  • part of my liver
  • part of my diaphragm
  • part of my pancreas 

I spent some time in a high dependency ward, followed by four weeks in a surgical ward.

Three days following my discharge home I was readmitted by ambulance due to an infection behind my liver.

I spent an additional two weeks in hospital.

This was the lowest point of my journey, seeing me receive multiple daily blood tests, drips and treatment. I was unable to eat properly and as a result I was growing weaker and more frail. I was also no longer in control of my health and unable to do any of the activities listed above. My oncologist and medical team recognised this and worked flawlessly together to get me discharged as soon as possible.

Despite several further hospital admissions, within four weeks of being at home I was no longer on any pain relief. I put this down to the alternative activities above and my holistic approach to my health care.

Following this episode I have received three further doses of chemotherapy. This has brought me to the ‘end of my treatment ‘ and with it my end of treatment scan.

This scan provided my oncologist and medical team with a baseline for future observation.

I am absolutely thrilled to say that yesterday my oncologist told me that my scan shows that my treatment to date has put my cancer into remission.

I am also extremely grateful that my oncologist took the time to show me all of my scans to date, allowing me to see my cancer and its affects on my body in January as well as my cancer free (and organ depleted) body as it is today. This was fascinating and offered me so much peace of mind.

I am more than aware that there is every chance that my cancer will relapse. My oncologist is very open with me which makes things a lot easier to deal with. However, I’m a strong believer in living for the moment and in this moment I am cancer free and loving my life!

I’ll not be giving the possibility of a relapse a second thought as all this serves to do is take the joy from today! This reminds me of my favourite quote from the founder of Maggies:

Don’t loose the joy of living in the fear of dying

Today I can say I am free from cancer

Today I can say I am in remission

Today I can say I had cancer

And what is more important than today?…

I, of course, will continue to have a holistic approach to my healthcare.

I will continue to focus on my physical, emotional and spiritual health.

I will continue to blog as my journey is still ongoing (I am still receiving formal medical treatment and support)

I will continue with my random acts of kindness.

Today I am happy and wish happiness on everyone else.

Love and light, Fi xx

Uncategorized

Post Surgery Update – 10 days on…

So here I am. I made it through my operation for stage four ovarian cancer.

My surgery, which was already going to be quite racial, ended up being even more extensive than originally planned, with all of my reproductive organs being removed plus three other organs completely removed and 4 partially removed.

No… I didn’t realise you could have so much removed at once either!


I went down to theatre at 9.30am on Monday 9th May 2016, where I was taken straight in to have my epidural. Due to the requirement for me to be put to sleep immediately afterwards, my husband was unable to join me for this part and so I had been feaking out about this all morning but the anesthetist team were exceptional. Recognising I was anxious they took their time talking to me and reassuring me. As it turns out my anaesthetist and I have a shared favourite Indian restaurant so I was comforted talking to him about the place as he did his work – I’m easily distracted by the talk of South Indian food!

Following the epidural, the team lay me down and got me ready to be put to sleep. I thought I’d still be anxious at this point but they were very kind and kept talking to me until I drifted off.

I don’t remember much of being in the recovery room following surgery but I’m told I was in there for a few hours. All I do really remember is a lot of people around my bed,  beeping machines and falling in and out of consciousness.

I also don’t remember being taken to the High Dependency Unit (HDU) but I do remember my husband being there.

    I know my parents and sisters came in to see me shortly afterwards too (I’m told it was about 1am by the time they were allowed in) but I don’t remember much else thanks to a wonderful cocktail of drugs and the epidural being left in.

    When I woke on Tuesday 10th I was in a whole new world. I slipped into sleep quickly and easily and I wasn’t ever really aware of the time, just the many different medical and surgical staff coming to see me for checks and medication. At some point my surgeon came in to explain what had happened during surgery:

    • My operation had lasted 11 hours.
    • They had conducted a complete hysterectomy – removing my cervix, womb, ovaries and right fallopian tube (I only had one prior to surgery due to a previous operation)
    • They had removed my omentum
    • They had removed my appendix
    • They had removed my spleen
    • They had removed part of my colon
    • They had removed part of my liver
    • They had removed part of my diaphragm
    • They had removed part of my pancreas 

    But, most importantly:

    • They had removed all visible disease!!

    This is certainly no small achievement with a stage four cancer patient! And, although I’m still only part way through my journey, it was exceptionally great news to hear (I’ll receive further, detailed updates over the next few weeks).

    I spent the rest of the week in HDU receiving oxygen and although I tried to remember everything (after being told that people often forget their time in HDU) I remember only snippets. But I did ask my husband to take a daily photograph which he kindly obliged to do. It frightens me to look at how ill I appeared at that stage so soon after my surgery but it also allows me to see the progress I am making now.

    My epidural was left in for a few days, however it only worked on my right hand side so, although my pain was manageable I struggled to move and I felt nauseated all of the time. In order for the nurses to check where the epidural was working they would rub a piece of ice over different parts of my abdomen and legs every couple of hours – an oddly settling sensation when you are lying in bed for days burning with heat. Having the epidural in for the first few days meant that I was unable to get out of bed and so the nurses had to change my bed with me still in it!…a tricky task involving plastic pull sheets and discomfort! 

    The feeling of constant pain is hard to describe. It’s never easy to get someone to understand what someone else is feeling, but I think the main factor with the pain was the frustration it caused me. I was suddenly unable to do so many things I’d taken for granted previously. I couldn’t sit up or roll over. I couldn’t wash myself or brush my teeth. I couldn’t eat or drink due to the need for my colon to recover post surgery. The list goes on and, at that stage, was seemingly endless and the light at the end of the tunnel still very dim.

    A turning point for me was when two physios managed to help me do a 60m walk using them and my drip for balance. Although I was knackered the following day I began to realise that I was slowly overcoming all of the things I couldn’t do and starting to build up the list of things I could. Taking advice from someone I deeply respect who has had to overcome similar physical challenges, I started to make a note every time I achieve something I hadn’t before: the first time I brushed my teeth unaided in bed; my first mouthful of food; the first time I manged to wipe my own face; the first time I managed to sit beside my bed rather than in it. Baby steps yes, but each hugely significant in my recovery journey.

    One of the things I thought I would find most challenging was the nurses helping me to wash me whilst I was still bed – something that I thought would be awful and degrading but was always done in a manner to ensure my utmost modesty and comfort. And, let’s be honest, when you are in that much need of care and support you are beyon caring about such trivial things as how you are washed, so long as you are comfortable. That said, the first day I was able to wash my own arms and face while they just washed my legs and back was utter heaven!

    This week I’ve been back on the normal ward but I’m now struggling with new daily physical and emotional battles:

    • I feel nauseated all of the time and so don’t eat much which, as anyone who knows me will confirm, is completely out of character and hugely frustrating for me.
    • I am completely exhausted. I still fall asleep often and struggle to converse due to breathlessness.
    • I am always in pain. Whilst I’m certainly not in the pain you would expect from this much surgery, thanks to so so many drugs, I am still obviously sore. This upsets me emotionally, rather than physically. In just 10 days I’ve gone from walking 3 miles a day to struggling to get out of bed unaided.
    • I’m struggling to come to terms with the extend of what my surgey involved. Every time I think about it I feel sick. When I typed it out in detail above I was actually physically sick. It is certainly a lot to take in and come to terms with.
    • I frequently brake down, hysterical from the emotional and physical burdens surgery has left me with. One night I was sedated just so I could settle for a couple of hours while me incredible(!) husband sat by my side until the early hours of the morning, holding my hand silently in the darkness.
    • I feel a lot of anger and frustration all of the time. This is mainly around not being able to do simple things like self care but also because I have a throat infection and breathlessness and find it challenging to converse.

    However, I’m also seeing progress with things I couldn’t do during my time in HDU:

    • I am now able to lie on my side
    • I can now have a shower without even the aid of a seat
    • I can dress myself
    • I can manage small bits of soft, cold food with the help of a range of anti-sickness tablets
    • I can walk unaided, albeit over very short distances and slower than a tortuise in treacle
    • I can brush my teeth at a sink unaided
    • I made it to the front door of the hospital in a wheel chair and saw outside for the first time in 10 days.


    Despite recognising my physical progress I continue to struggle emotionally much more than I had expected. You would anticipate such major surgery to be a physical battle but I think the emotional struggle is playing a much more significant role. Many aspects of my life will change as a result of my surgery and it will take time to learn how to adjust to and live with my new world. It is mostly so challenging to go through something that your nearest and dearest could never relate to – and you deeply hope they will never have to experience. It can feel lonely and frightening. Even the medical staff don’t know how you ‘feel’. At this time I find myself so grateful again for fellow warriors holding my hand on this journey, from which I hope great friendships will emerge.

    My recovery will obviously take a number of months. During that time I’ll be learning to take each day as it comes and trying to regain my old positive sense of self.

    I know my journey is long.

    I know my journey is challenging. 

    Most importantly though, I know my journey is possible.

    For now I just need to keep making daily progress and focus on getting home – hopefully soon!

    Love and light, Fi xxx

    —-

    I know people will have many questions but, at this stage, please respect that I am currently too weak to reply to messages and have shared all that I am comfortable sharing just now in the blog post above.

    Comments of support and positivity below are very welcome – and indeed never more necessary! – but I am going through a lot of recovery and, with the best will in the world, do not have the strength to reply to loads of messages.

    Just now it’s about me getting through the next phase so that I can begin to regain my strength.

    I’ll write again soon xxx

     

    ovarian cancer

    Postcode lottery: Chemo 4 – Day 12

    Cancer care (or any care for that matter) shouldn’t be a postcode lottery. It shouldn’t matter what country in the UK you live in…or, for that matter, what town…

    It shouldn’t…

    But sadly this is not the case.

    In ovarian cancer Avastin (bevacizumab) is an amazing drug that works by preventing ovarian cancer from developing new blood vessels and ‘recovering’ from the damage chemo is doing to our tumours.

    Ovarian cancer is renowned for becoming resistant to chemotherapy. Avastin helps postpone this. 

     It is given through an IV every three weeks for a period of 9 months.

    It is given to woman with stage 3 and stage 4 ovarian cancer.

    At this stage our cancer is incurable.

    Avastin gives us time.

    Time with family. Time with loved ones. Time when our cancer isn’t spreading.

    But it isn’t given to all of us.

    Whilst I am lucky enough to receive treatment from an NHS trust that administers Avastin, neither the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) in England, nor the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) in Scotland have recommended its use. It is also not administered in Northern Irland or Wales.

    Whilst some people are given it as part of a clinical trial, or if their NHS board has specialist funding, everyone else has to make a choice to move house or to go without.

    To go without that extra time…

    But…you can help ensure every woman with ovarian cancer is given Avastin.

    You can help ensure grandmothers, mothers, daughters, sisters, aunts and friends have more time…

    The Westminster Government is currently reforming the Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF).

    You can write to your MP asking them to raise this with the Secretary of State for Health. 

    Target Ovarian Cancer have created an online form with a letter already written. All you need to do is enter your name, address and email address and click send.

    It will take you less than 2 minutes.

    It could give thousands of woman another 9 months.

    2 minutes of your time for 9 months of theirs.

    Think about it..but not for too long…

    Do the right thing.

    Thank you on behalf of every woman still to be diagnosed* with late stage ovarian cancer.

    Love and light, Fi xx

    —–

    *whilst under the proposed reforms there is a risk that Avastin (bevacizumab) might not be available to women diagnosed with ovarian cancer in the future it will continue to be available to women receiving it now.

    —–