School of Medicine Hosts Annual 5k

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By Katie Buda

About 700 people convened at Sugar House Park on Saturday, Sept. 10 to celebrate the lives of those who have suffered from ovarian cancer.

The Susan Sandoval Memorial 5k race, which is held every September during women’s health month, aims to raise awareness of gynecological cancers. Medical students, doctors, community members and students participated in the race or attended in support.

The annual 5k was designed to save lives. Dr. Mark Dodson, gynecological oncologist at the U hospital, says events like these are significant because they “increase awareness of these cancers which will lead to early diagnosis and detection, inevitably saving lives.”

In its 10th year, the race has grown in participation, starting with fewer than 100 participants and five sponsors to this year boasting over 700 participants and “dozens” of sponsors, Dodson said.

In the realm of gynecology, much more has strengthened since the initial race.

“Ten years ago many would consider the diagnosis of ovarian cancer to be a death sentence,” Dodson said.

Modern science now treats these cancers with aggressive surgeries and improved chemotherapy, which has “significantly improved survivals.”

Dodson urges personal awareness of ovarian cancer, and to seek out an oncologist as early as possible.

For more information, visit http://medicine.utah.edu/obgyn/index.php

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@katie_buda