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Most people know me as a fashion and retail pioneer and as the founder and president of Liz Lange Maternity. Not many, though, know me as a cervical cancer survivor.
I was diagnosed with cervical cancer after my annual trip to my gynecologist in the summer of 2001 at age 35. A week after my appointment, my doctor called me back into the office after telling me that the annual test results "looked funny." At the time, I had a new baby, a 2 1/2-year-old son, and my business designing maternity clothes was beginning to take off.
After undergoing a biopsy, the doctor found that I had dysplasia, or abnormal cell tissue, on my cervix. They removed all the abnormal tissue, but told me it was standard procedure to run additional tests. A week later, my doctor called and told me that I had cervical cancer. I underwent a hysterectomy and other treatments to successfully fight the diagnosis. I couldn’t bear the pain of discussing the disease at that time, and stayed silent on the subject until recently.
As a cervical cancer survivor, it is important that I do all I can to help educate women about how to help protect themselves from the disease. I am speaking out in hopes of helping all women understand the facts about human papillomavirus (HPV) and the diseases it causes. I hope that doing this will help minimize the number of women who have to hear the same diagnosis I did.
Liz Langeis a cervical cancer survivor, celebrity fashion designer and mom. As the founder and president of Liz Lange Maternity, she single-handedly revolutionized maternity style and society's perception of pregnant women. Liz works with the Gynecologic Cancer Foundation to educate other women. She lives in New York City with her husband, Jeffrey Lange, and their children, Gus and Alice.
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