Monday, July 4, 2016

Early Detection Can Save A Life – Ovarian Cancer

The word cancer itself can send shivers down the spine, because it has turned out to be fatal in many cases. The biggest challenge for cancer specialist treating cancer is that, it shows no symptoms until too late.

Though ovarian cancer is 5th common cancer among women, not many are diagnosed in the early stages since it shows no symptoms until the disease has advanced. Even in later stages, the symptoms cannot be associated with cancer since they seem to be a cause of some common ailment.

The risk factor for ovarian cancer is as follows

  • Age – incidence is higher in women aged above 40 years
  • Breast cancer – women who were diagnosed with breast cancer are at a higher risk for ovarian cancer
  • Pregnancy – women who give birth to a baby before the age of 26, lower their risk of developing ovarian cancer. Breast feeding will further lower the risk.
  • Hormone treatment – women who undergo estrogen hormone replacement therapy increase their risk developing ovarian cancer
  • Family history – family history and genetic factors are also known to increase the risk of ovarian cancer in women
  • Obesity – in addition to many other health issues, obesity increases the risk of developing cancer, including ovarian cancer in women

What are the signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer women should watch out for?

The signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer shows up more often when the disease has spread beyond ovaries, though in some cases the symptoms appear earlier. When detected early, cancer treatment is more successful. 
The most common symptoms of ovarian cancer are
  • Bloating of stomach
  • Pain in pelvic region and abdomen
  • Lessened appetite and feeling full without eating much
  • Frequent urination
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Weight loss
  • Fatigue
None of the above symptoms are really scary since they are seen in non-cancerous people as well. You should be worried by the persistence of the symptoms. Also, the frequency and intensity of the above symptoms will increase in case it is caused by cancer.
In addition, there could be recurrence of upset stomach, back pain, painful intercourse, and changes in menstrual cycle and persistent constipation.
Even though all the symptoms of ovarian cancer occurs in women who may not have ovarian cancer, it pays to visit a right Oncology Centre to clear the doubts. Screen yourself regularly for early detection. Imaging tests, blood tests and biopsies can detect ovarian cancer in early stage.  


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