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Young Woman Thought She Had IBS, Turned Out To Be 14 Lbs. of Stage 3 Cancerous Tumors

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Sarah Nicholson is a 26-year-old woman who lives in New Zealand. After the health troubles she’s suffered through in the past year, she has a message for all women: watch for changes in your normal routines, and get checked out if you notice changes.

The problems all started when she started experiencing unusual fatigue and changes in her normal eating and bathroom routines. She assumed — as many do — that she was dealing with Irritable Bowel Syndrome or something similar, and she waved it off.

But then she started to notice that her stomach was becoming bloated — not just a “food baby” or gassy sort of bloat: she looked like she was actually pregnant.



And based on what she was carrying, there was a reason for that. Doctors discovered that there were 14 pounds of cancerous tumors growing in one of her ovaries.

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She’d known something had been wrong, but she had no idea how serious the issue was.

“I had symptoms which could have been of things less serious like irritable bowel syndrome,” she said, according to Fox News, “But I had a round bloated stomach, which looked as if I was pregnant, and I knew it was just not right.”



“Part of me crumbled inside,” she said, referring to when she got the diagnosis. “The other part was kind of relieved that I had a diagnosis.”

“They said I was at stage 3 — that’s one stage away from being terminal. This was really serious and I knew it was going to affect my future.”

Fortunately, removing the ovaries is fairly straightforward: it’s not like brain cancer or throat cancer because you don’t need your ovaries to survive, and they can be removed without seriously jeopardizing your ability to lead a normal life.

“For me it was a no-brainer and I decided to have it,” she said. “I did not want the risk. It was a difficult decision to make and it was upsetting because it would mean I would never have children of my own.”



Ovarian cancer is something the young woman never thought she’d face personally, and for good reason: Most women who get the diagnosis are over 50.

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Despite that fact, over 1,000 women under 50 are still diagnosed with the cancer every year, and Nicholson feels that it’s her mission to warn other young women who, like she did, think it’s no concern to them.



“(Ovarian cancer) clearly can happen to younger people which is why I feel so strongly about getting the message out to younger women. I would ask people to listen to your body,” she said. “You know your body best and if you think something is not right, get it checked out.”

“It is known as the ‘silent killer’ because the symptoms are often put down to way less serious medical problems,” she wrote on Facebook. “If 1 girl gets to the doctors I’ll be happy.”

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