Cheryl's Story

“I am eternally grateful for the generosity of others in trying to solve the devastating puzzle that cancer is.”

Cheryl was living what she describes as a ‘normal’ life in suburban Melbourne with her husband and three daughters. Between her job as a housing officer and keeping up with her new grandson, Cheryl had a happy routine. But life quickly turned upside down when she was diagnosed with stage two ovarian cancer, which was discovered after a routine hernia operation. Cheryl started six months of chemotherapy straight away.

Perhaps most frightening of all, Cheryl had no symptoms of ovarian cancer – if not for the surgery, her cancer may have been discovered too late. Ovarian cancer is known by many as the ‘silent killer’. There are still very few treatment options and it takes the lives of more than one thousand Australian women each year.

Cheryl’s initial course of chemo went well, and life slowly returned to normal. But less than two years later, she started to feel a pain in her side that would not go away.

Her GP suggested a scan, and confirmed her cancer had come back. Her worst fears had been confirmed. Cheryl’s second diagnosis was, understandably, harder to take than the first; she knew exactly what she was in for this time.

Cheryl’s second round of chemo started out well. But her tumour did not disappear fully. She had no choice but to endure a third round of chemotherapy. The tumours have not responded to chemotherapy enough and Cheryl now has fewer treatment options than ever. But she tries her best to stay optimistic.

Like many of our patients, she feels comforted to know that everyone around her – the doctors, nurses and researchers – are all cancer specialists. We want to hold off my cancer for a while so that my doctors can look for trials that can keep me around for longer. I’m looking forward to seeing my grandchildren grow.”

Cheryl is extremely thankful for the generosity of Peter Mac supporters, like you, who make this possible: “I would like to thank everyone for their donations; however ‘thank you’ almost seems inadequate.”


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