Ovarian cancer is a type of cancer that affects women of reproductive age and is sometimes referred to as the silent killer. It is often difficult to diagnose because many of its symptoms resemble those of other common health issues. Although there is no single good screening test for ovarian cancer, early detection and treatment are key to successful outcomes.
Signs and Symptoms
One of the primary signs that something may be wrong is a persistent abdominal or pelvic pain, which is often coupled with bloating or a feeling of fullness in the abdomen. Other signs and symptoms may include fatigue, vaginal bleeding or discharge, and change in urination or bowel movements. Those with a family history of breast, ovarian, or colon cancer are at higher risk for developing ovarian cancer and should pay close attention to these signs and symptoms.
Diagnosis and Testing
If ovarian cancer is suspected, your doctor will perform a physical examination and order imaging tests, such as an ultrasound or CT scan to view the ovaries. A tissue sample may also be taken to detect abnormal cells. If cancer is found, other tests may be done to determine whether it has spread beyond the ovaries.
Treatment and Health
The primary treatment for ovarian cancer is surgery to remove the tumor, followed by chemotherapy or radiation therapy, depending on the extent of the cancer. Women can take steps to reduce their risk of developing ovarian cancer, including being aware of family history, eating a balanced diet, getting regular exercise, and managing stress.
Keywords: ovarian cancer, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, health, pain, bloating, family history, ultrasound, CT scan, surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy