Ovarian cancer is considered to be one of the deadliest among cancers and as less as 20% of the cases get diagnosed in the early stages, making it incredibly hard to treat. This is primarily because the symptoms are not recognizable in the earlier stages. They may resemble symptoms of other diseases, getting misdiagnosed, or they seem too minor to take note of.
Going through a quick overview of ovarian cancer will enable one to find out that there are about 21000 U.S. women who get a diagnosis of ovarian cancer every year, and almost 14,000 die from the disease. Here are some life-saving ovarian cancer facts:
1. An overview of the early symptoms of ovarian cancer
Most of the symptoms of ovarian cancer overlap with symptoms of other conditions such as constipation and irritable bowel syndrome. Cancer may reach the advanced stage before it’s detected and diagnosed and since early detection can lead to higher chances of a successful treatment, it is a dangerous disease. The symptoms of ovarian cancer are as follows:
- Sudden changes in bowel habits such as bouts of constipation
- Abdominal bloating
- A constant urge to urinate
- Not able to eat much or feeling full quickly
- Sudden weight loss
- Stomach upsets
- General malaise or fatigue
- The feeling of discomfort in the pelvic region
- Experiencing pain during sexual intercourse
- Changes in the menstrual cycle
2. Types of ovarian cancer
The ovaries are composed of three types of cells and tumors can develop in each of these three cells.
- Epithelial tumors form on the outside of the ovaries. Most ovarian cancers, about 90%, are epithelial tumors.
- Stromal tumors form in the hormone-producing cells. Only 7% of ovarian cancers are stromal tumors.
- Germ cell tumors are rare and generate in the cells that form eggs.
3. Treatment of ovarian cancer
Ovarian cancer tests can reveal its stage and how far it has metastasized, based on which the treatment is decided. An individual’s doctors will chart out a course of treatment and combine a few of the below-mentioned methods as required.
- Surgery for staging and removing the rogue cells
- Hormone therapy
- Targeted therapy
4. Prevention of ovarian cancer
One cannot totally eliminate the risk but yes, they can minimize the risk of developing ovarian cancer. Incorporating certain steps can significantly lower an individual’s risk of having a positive diagnosis for ovarian cancer. These steps and factors are as follows;
- Taking oral birth control pills
- Surgical procedures performed on your reproductive organs such as hysterectomy and tubal ligation
Most overviews of ovarian cancer read like this, the survival rate is almost 90% in the early stages of ovarian cancer, especially if it is treated right away. Knowledge and a little bit of mindfulness can go a long way in preventing this deadly disease. If one suffers from any of the symptoms mentioned above, it is crucial to make an appointment with their gynecologist.