09/23/2005

WVU Spearheads Statewide Awareness of Gynecologic Cancer

MORGANTOWN, W.Va.— Governor Joe Manchin III has signed a proclamation declaring September Gynecologic Cancer Awareness Month in West Virginia.  Vicki Baker, M.D., chief of gynecologic oncology at West Virginia University’s Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center, requested the Governor demonstrate his commitment in support of women’s health.

“As a practicing gynecologic oncologist in West Virginia, I care for women with reproductive cancers each day and know only too well the importance of early detection and proper diagnosis,” Dr. Baker said.  “Early detection and diagnosis is only possible when women are informed about their risks of these cancers and early warning signs.  Providing this potentially life-saving information is our mission, especially during September.”

As a nationally recognized expert in gynecology/oncology and women’s health, Dr. Baker has extensive experience in treating women with cancers of the reproductive system, including cancers of the cervix, fallopian tube, uterus and ovary. She has been listed in The Best Doctors in America several times and was named one of the best physicians nationally for women by Good Housekeeping.

Gynecologic cancer is the fourth leading cause of death from cancer for women in the United States.  More than 82,000 women will be diagnosed with the disease this year alone.  In West Virginia, cervical cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related death in women 25 to 44 years old, and the second most commonly diagnosed cancer.

"We appreciate the fact that Governor Manchin is taking note of this health issue," said John E. Prescott, M.D., dean of the WVU School of Medicine and acting director of the Cancer Center. "His interest in the health of all West Virginians is clear, and it's helpful to us in bringing our prevention message to women and their families."

The proclamation acknowledges WVU’s Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center for working diligently to increase research in order to understand the causes, find effective screening and prevention strategies, and develop improved therapies for gynecologic cancers.

West Virginia University is part of “Mountains of Hope: The West Virginia Comprehensive Cancer Control Coalition,” which seeks to reduce the burden of cancer in the state through effective prevention, early detection, treatment, and rehabilitation efforts.

- WVU -


05-176
For more information:
Sherry Stoneking, Cancer Center (304) 293-4599
sstoneking@hsc.wvu.edu
sls:09-23-05

Return To News Releases