Annette shares what symptoms she experienced that indicated she had ovarian cancer.
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My name is Anette Leal Mattern and I'm a 21-year survivor of ovarian cancer. I'm also a patient-advocate and I work for issues that affect women’s health, particularly in gynecologic cancers. I'm also a breast cancer survivor and my mission is to help eradicate cancers for women so that they can achieve their full potential. Like most women with ovarian cancer, I didn’t know anything about the disease and the worst symptoms presented but I didn’t know what they were, so I ignored them. There’s bloating, the abdominal area, abdominal or pelvic pain, pain with intercourse and I had all of these symptoms. Some women experience a fullness in their digestive areas so they're not able to eat fully and normally or urgency of urination which is another key symptom. And most women are misdiagnosed, 85% of us are found late stage. Mine was so advanced that I didn’t know until my tumor literally ruptured and hemorrhaged and I nearly died on the operating table and that was the first clue that I had cancer.