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September is Gynecologic Cancer Awareness month. 

Among local events recognizing the need for more attention to the risks, symptoms and treatments for these diseases are:

Friday, September 4:  Wear Teal Day to raise awareness of ovarian cancer.

Tuesday, September 15, 6:30-8:00 pm:  Sibley Hospital hosts an ovarian health and genetics seminar featuring  Marilyn Jerome Foust, MD; Deborah  Armstrong , MD; and Reem Saadeh, MD  in the Medical Office Building Conference Room 2 at 5215 Loughboro Road, N.W.  Please register at:

Saturday, September 19, 9:00-3:00: Join Rhonda’s Club at the  Alfred Street Baptist Church health fair, 301 South Alfred Street, Alexandria.

Tuesday, September 29:  Rock Paper Cocktails 2015!, an evening of champagne and shopping at the Washington Golf & Country Club, Arlington starting at 6:00 to benefit  Inova Women's Hospital's Women in Need (W.I.N.) Fund, which provides much needed support to underserved women battling gynecologic cancers.  Purchase tickets on


Patients with stage IV ovarian cancer and their partners are invited to a free retreat weekend, August 28, 29 and 30 at the Bon Secours Spiritual center in conjunction with Johns Hopkins Gynecologic and Breast Oncology. During the weekend, couples can share their journey through cancer and have a weekend to retreat from daily life and focus on each other. Meals, lodging and use of the facility and program are free. Attendance will be limited to 10 couples.

Click here to view the brochure for more information and registration. 

Questions can be directed to:

Antoinette Solnik, RN, BSN at

Cancer Nurse Navigator, Gynecology/Oncology and Urology
The Sibley Center for Gynecologic Oncology and Advanced Pelvic Surgery

A Radioshow for Cancer Patients

Listen to "Frankly Speaking About Cancer" every Tuesday at 4pm eastern time (1pm pacific time). The host is Kim Thiboldeaux, President and CEO of the Cancer Support Community, stives to empower her listeners to live well with cancer. Click here to visit the website. You can also find past episodes available for listening.


Dr. Maya Soetoro-Ng Helps Rhonda’s Club Raise Awareness


On Sunday, August 2, Rhonda’s Club was pleased to welcome Dr. Maya Soetoro-Ng, an educator at the University of Hawaii and sister of President Barack Obama, to a reception and book signing at Busboys and Poets. Dr. Soetoro-Ng talked to more than one hundred guests about her late mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, and her struggle with ovarian cancer.  She shared the life lessons learned from her mother in a children’s book, A Ladder to the Moon.  We appreciate Dr. Soetoro-Ng’s commitment to raising awareness of ovarian cancer in our community.

Tribute to Frances Stolusky


Our friend and colleague, Fran Stolusky, passed away on November 4, 2014.  Fran will always be remembered as an active and long-term member of the board of Rhonda’s Club and as the long-time manager of our Survivors Teaching Students classes.  She trained, scheduled and mentored scores of women to share their stories of survival with medical students with the goal of increasing awareness and early detection.  Every year, she helped bring that message to more than 400 students.  Fran also participated in countless health fairs, fundraising walks, conferences and other outreach programs to further our mission to battle gynecologic cancers by raising public awareness of symptoms, educating survivors and medical professionals, and supporting research to improve quality of life, and find the cures.  Fran was always there, and she always got the job done.

view our calendar of events


Intraperitoneal Treatment Underused

The New York Times reported on a study from the Journal of Clincial Oncology on the underuse of intraperitoneal (IP) treatment for ovarian cancer.  Read the article here.

On March 18, the Society of Gynecologic Oncology SGO) reported the following Women's Cancer News.

ChemoFx Improves Ovarian Cancer Outcomes

ChemoFx® provides invaluable information to physicians choosing from 20 equivalent treatment recommendations without prior knowledge of how individual ovarian cancer patients may respond. ChemoFx determines platinum resistance in primary ovarian cancer and demonstrates longer overall survival by 14 months in recurrent ovarian cancer, making it instrumental in improving patient outcomes.

Intraperitoneal chemotherapy in ovarian cancer

Long-term findings from two randomized trials demonstrated that intraperitoneal (IP) chemotherapy significantly improved survival compared with intravenous (IV) therapy. The combined analysis of the GOG-172 and GOG-114 trials showed that patients treated with IP chemotherapy experienced a 16% reduction in the risk of progression compared with IV therapy. Additionally, IP chemotherapy led to a median overall survival (OS) of 62 months compared with 51 months for IV therapy.

Robotic Surgery Report Card

A study found that robotic surgery for benign gynecologic procedures had a higher rate of complication than conventional surgery, and was more costly.

FDA Approves Avastin Plus Chemotherapy to Treat Women With Platinum-Resistant Recurrent Ovarian Cancer


November 14, 2014, the Food and Drug Administration announced the approval of Genentech’s Avastin (bevacizumab) in combination with chemotherapy for women with platinum-resistant recurrent ovarian cancer. The approval was based on the results of a Phase III clinical trial which showed women who received Avastin with chemotherapy had a 62% improvement in progression free survival (disease worsening) as compared to those who received chemotherapy alone.

Bevacizumab Plus Fosbretabulin Improves Progression-Free Survival in Ovarian Cancer Patients

The combination of the antiangiogenesis drug bevacizumab and the vascular-disrupting agent fosbretabulin is superior to bevacizumab alone in the treatment of recurrent ovarian, tubal, and peritoneal cancer, according to an oral presentation made at the biennial meeting of the International Gynecologic Cancer Society. A study found significant improvement in progression-free survival among patients treated with the combination of bevacizumab and fosbretabulin versus bevacizumab alone, with a median improvement of 2.5 months.

Amgen Ovarian Cancer Drug Fails to Improve Overall Survival

Amgen Inc said its experimental ovarian cancer drug did not show statistically significant improvement in overall survival rate in a late-stage trial. Patients given the drug, trebananib, along with a chemotherapy agent paclitaxel, experienced overall survival of 19.3 months, compared with 18.3 months for the placebo group. Analysts said oncologists expect the drug to have little or no benefits in terms of overall survival and FDA approval seems unlikely.

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