Tony-nominated actress Valisia LeKae used her voice to sing hit songs from the 1960s, recently starring as Diana Ross in “Motown: The Musical” on Broadway. Now, two months after receiving a diagnosis of ovarian cancer, and stepping down from her leading role to receive treatment at The Mount Sinai Hospital, Ms. LeKae is using her voice to speak about the importance of early cancer detection.
Ovarian cancer is a heterogeneous and rapidly progressive disease of low prevalence and poor survival. In the United States the number of deaths attributed to ovarian cancer approximates that of all other gynecologic malignancies combined. Unfortunately, the majority (75%) of women diagnosed with ovarian carcinoma continue to have advanced stage disease (Stage III/ IV), with widespread metastases throughout the peritoneal cavity, lymph nodes, liver or lungs. Presently less than 20% of women with ovarian cancers are detected when the cancer is still confined to the ovary (Stage I).