Ashley Ogren of Lenexa, Kansas, was diagnosed with stage 4 low-grade serous ovarian carcinoma in October 2021 at the age of 33.
Ashley had been diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome when going through IVF, so when she experienced bloating and pain after her second child was born, she attributed it to an ovarian cyst.
During an ultrasound at an annual check up, she remembers the tech frantically grabbing the doctor.
“It showed a 20-centimeter mass and ascites,” she said.
Following a radical hysterectomy, the pathology showed that the majority was borderline cancer with only 2 millimeters of low-grade serous carcinoma.
“I was diagnosed at 1A,” Ashley said. “My oncologist ordered a CT scan a couple of weeks later where it showed I had widespread disease in my lymph nodes. After a failed biopsy, I had a lymph node surgically removed and it was confirmed that it was low-grade. I was upgraded to stage 4B.”
Ashley, who has two young sons and will celebrate her 10-year anniversary with her husband in July, was petrified that she might not have long to live after hearing the rarity of her diagnosis. She is hopeful for additional funding for research into better treatments for low-grade serous cancer.
“I want to see my boys graduate, attend their weddings, go on trips with my husband and continue to live a love filled life,” she said.