A 22-year-old ignored pain in her stomach because she was lactose intolerant. It turned into something more sinister.

Anita Durairaj

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The New York Post reports a medical incident involving a young woman. Her story highlights the importance of women listening to their bodies and not ignoring recurring pain - no matter how trivial.

A 22-year-old Australian woman, Chloe Spitlanic, had always been lactose and fructose intolerant. Thus, she did not think it was anything serious when she developed pain in her stomach and side.

The only warning sign was that the pain remained persistent.

As the pain became worse, she was encouraged to see a doctor especially as it became apparent that the pain was coming from near her ovaries.

The doctor's appointment led to a devastating diagnosis for the young woman. She had been diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

“This GP started talking about the appearance of three very large cysts around my ovaries, but then she immediately followed this by saying they believe it to be cancer,”

Spitlanic thought she was going to die. She says,

“I couldn’t stop crying during and after that conversation and it’s definitely taken a long time for me to fully feel comfortable about recalling that whole experience and to even admit to myself that I have cancer.”

Moreover, the cancer was in a more advanced stage - stage 3.

Spitlanic's treatment involved surgery but it took a toll on her body. She spent three months after the surgery learning how to walk and stand with the help of a physiotherapist.

Now Spitlanic is warning other women to listen to their bodies and that regardless of young age, cancer can still strike (the average age of diagnosis for ovarian cancer is 66).

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Trained with a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati, I write unique and interesting articles focused on science, history, and current events.


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