House Call: Melanie’s Ride for Hope and Gynecological Cancers

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The second annual Melanie’s Ride for Hope will be held this Saturday, May 11.

Melanie’s Ride for Hope is a fund-raising event established to honor the memory of Melanie Payne, a neonatal nurse at Cone Health Women’s Hospital who died of uterine cancer in December 2010.

The event, which involves a fun day of bicycle riding and other activities for all ages and ability levels, will raise funds to benefit Cone Health Cancer Center’s research department, especially for the research of gynecologic cancers.

More: Melanie's Ride for Hope poster | Melanie'e Ride for Hope brochure

Gynecologic cancers are classified as any form of cancer that presents in a female’s reproductive organs, with common forms including ovarian, uterine and cervical cancers.

Signs, symptoms, prevention and screening methods of gynecologic cancer vary greatly among the different forms.  For instance, cervical and ovarian cancers do not present with distinct symptoms until later stages of the disease.  Therefore, it is of utmost importance that women schedule regular, annual visits to their practitioner’s office and that they mention any unusual symptoms they have been experiencing.

Gynecologic oncologists are specialists who have received additional fellowship education and training in treating cancers of the female reproductive system.  Studies have shown that gynecologic cancer patients treated by gynecologic oncologists have better outcomes than those treated by general oncologists.

Cone Health’s partnership with board certified gynecologic oncologists at UNC Chapel Hill allows women diagnosed with gynecologic cancers to receive exceptional care and cancer treatment right here in the community—close to work, home and their support networks.

For more information or to register for Melanie’s Ride for Hope, visit or call (336)274-5959.

For information on gynecologic cancers and/or the services of Cone Health Cancer Center, visit or call (336)832-1100.

Spokesperson Background:

Nancy Wilkinson is the clinical nurse specialist for gynecologic oncology at Cone Health Cancer Center.  She earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in 1982 and a Master of Science in Nursing in 1994 from University of North Carolina at Greensboro School of Nursing.