Pierce's Message of Hope
- Actor Pierce Brosnan shares some inspiring words of resilience.
- Brosnan, 67, lost both his first wife and daughter to ovarian cancer.
- Ovarian cancer has been called “the cancer that whispers,” due to its hard-to-detect symptoms, which may mimic PMS symptoms, such as abdominal pain.
Brosnan continued his inspiring message and said, “We shall march on one way or another and do the best we can because that’s all we can do: The best we can….Today we just enjoy each other’s company and give thanks here and now. Love and only love. Alright, folks. God bless and take care.” Brosnan ended his video with a hearty laugh and a wink, reminding us of his enduring charm.
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Pierce’s Ovarian Cancer Losses
Brosnan lost his first wife, Cassandra, to ovarian cancer in 1991. Cassandra went through four years of treatment before passing of the disease at the young age of 43. Many years later, in 2013, Cassandra and Brosnan’s daughter, Charlotte died of ovarian cancer. She was almost the same age as when her mom died; Charlotte passed away at 42.
Dr. Beth Karlan, a Gynecologic Oncologist at UCLA Medical Center, spoke with SurvivorNet in an earlier interview about detecting this disease. She said, “What we’ve found from multiple studies, it’s this constellation of symptoms. If that’s really happening and you’re experiencing it every day, and they seem to be crescendoing, getting worse, even if that goes on for only two weeks, you should call your doctor.”
Ovarian Cancer Symptoms
- Feeling full earlier/decrease in appetite
- Feeling bloated
- Changes in bowel habits
- Pain in the pelvis
- Urinary symptoms, such as an urgent need to go
- Extreme fatigue
- Abdominal swelling
- Pain during sex
Dr. Jeanne Schilder, a Professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology at Indiana University Medical Center, told SurvivorNet in an earlier interview, “A patient can feel relatively normal and suddenly wake up with abdominal distention and symptoms that are related to ovarian cancer. Those patients often will present to an emergency department or to their primary care physician and are typically referred to a gynecologic oncologist fairly rapidly if they present with symptoms of abdominal distention and a pelvic mass.”
Depending on the severity of the symptoms, a person may be treated right away. Dr. Schilder says, “The urgency for the operation is related to the patient’s symptoms. Most of the time, these symptoms develop so quickly, and patients are uncomfortable, have difficulty breathing just related to the abdominal distension. And removing that fluid and removing the mass gets them well on their way to getting back to their normal life and being able to be treated and get the tumor and the fluid under control.”
Being aware of the symptoms of ovarian cancer is a good defense against this disease, so you can be in tune with your body and contact your physician if something feels off to you.