Unfortunately, one of the leading causes for death nowadays is cancer. For many years now, scientists have been trying to find a cure for every type of cancer there is. To this moment, we are still expecting and hoping that they will find some kind of a cure. In the meanwhile, all we can do is watch out for signs and symptoms that can help us in some kind of diagnosis.
According to statistics, Canada had 2,800 cases of ovarian cancer and devastating number of 1,750 deaths from those cases in 2016. In United States there were 22,280 new cases and a total of 14,240 deaths in 2016.
The reason for the high death total is because this particular type of cancer is very hard to be diagnosed. Its symptoms are often mistaken for other diseases and there is no test that can diagnose it. According to new research, there are promising signs of diagnosing early ovarian cancer.
A research conducted in the UK found that early detection of cancer can drastically increase the chance of survival, so paying attention to your body and regular check-ins with your doctor are key.
Here is some information you need to know about this disease. There are three types of ovarian cancer:
- Epithelial tumors – 90 percent of ovarian cancers are this type. These tumors start in the tissue that is found outside the ovaries
- Stromal tumors- About 7 percent of ovarian tumors are stromal and these are usually diagnosed in the early stages. They start on the ovarian tissue that’s responsible for hormone cells production.
- Germ cell tumors – It usually occur in younger women and they start in the egg-producing cells
When talking about ovarian cancer, you need to take several things into consideration: age for instance. Women from all ages can be diagnosed with ovarian cancer, but those who are 50 to 60 year old have a higher risk of being diagnosed with it.
As we previously mentioned, there is no test that can diagnose ovarian cancer. However there are some other types of tests that can help the doctor in the diagnosis. The first test includes a CT scan or an ultrasound of the pelvis and abdomen. The second test is a blood test that can detect a protein (CA 125) that is usually found in ovarian cancer cases.
Stages of Ovarian Cancer: There are 4 stages of ovarian cancer. Stage 1 of ovarian cancer is when the cancer is found in one or both ovaries. Stage 2 is when the cancer has begun to spread to other areas of the pelvis. In stage 3, the cancer has now spread to the abdomen. The final stage is when the cancer is found outside the abdomen.
Watch for these symptoms:
- Increased need to urinate
- Persistent bloating
- Difficulty eating/feeling full quickly
- Lower abdominal and pelvic pain
In most cases all of these symptoms are easily mistaken for other health issues and diseases with the gastrointestinal tract
If you experience any of these symptoms, make sure you monitor their persistence and frequency.
If they don’t go away after three weeks or more, make an appointment with your doctor to talk about getting checked for ovarian cancer.