My Ovacome
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Over- or under-reacting?

I am 42 and have the BRCA2 gene mutation. I live overseas and my (private health insurance) gynae here is determined to convince me to have my ovaries removed whenever there is a (benign) cyst on a test result. I currently have 6 monthly ultrasounds and blood tests and annual mammograms. None of these are showing anything sinister. I do not see the point in prophylactic surgery at this point - my relatives who developed cancer both did so over 65. I am being very conscious about eating and healthy habits, decreasing stress and all the contributory factors. Am I naive?

3 Replies

Dear Vanessa

I am one of the support line nurses at Ovacome. I am sorry to hear that you are feeling pressurised into having your ovaries removed. As ovarian cancer can be dfficult to treat, doctors often feel it would be better to do something to prevent the disease happening in the first place, particularly when, with a BRCa2 gene mutation there is an increased risk of developing the disease. So this may explain the pressure you are feeling.

Of course the decision as to if/when you have your ovaries removed is entirely yours and we have spoken to women who want to delay any surgery particularly if they are premenopausal. You maybe feeling that you are not saying no I am never having the surgery but not at the present time

Below are just a few points you might wish to consider and if you would like to discuss things further please do ring our support line 02072996650 Mon- Fri 10-5

How would you feel if you developed the disease when you had had a chance to prevent it? I am aware that you are having regular screening but at present we don't know for sure that screening even for high risk women makes a diference.

Having your ovaries removed will decrease the risk of you developing breast cancer

There is a tendency for the age of developing the disease to advance by 5-10 years with each generation

The risk that you maybe quoted of developing the disease are lifetime risks so will seem high

Let us know if we can help further

Best Wishes



Hi vanessas

I would say you are 'under' reacting. But this is just my personal opinion. If I'd known what I had to go through [and still go through now] regarding ovarian cancer, I'd have had the whole lot removed years ago! Unless you are still considering having children, it seems like a good idea. You are different from your relatives...we are all individual.

Why put yourself through the obvious worry? I didn't have any signs at all until my cyst weighed about a kilo...there are no proper checks for OVAC.

Good luck anyway - you will know what to do yourself. Listen to your body and don't let anyone decide for you.



I am also brca2 + I agree with optimiste. I watched my sister die at the age of 28 from ovarian cancer and if there is one good thing that can come from that it is that i can do somthing to prevent it. I am 27 now and intend to have my children within the next few years, My plan if everything go's as i hope is to have my ovaries removed when i am 30. For me the side effects i.e. menapouse are well worth it to get rid of that risk. You have to remember that this disease is so difficult to diagnose and treat.


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