You may have heard of ovarian cancer as a “silent killer”, and there is a good reason for this – the disease does not have as many obvious indicators as breast cancer or skin cancer, for example. But that does not mean that women have no symptoms.
“Patients can have many symptoms, but they are not specific,” says Dr. Shannon Westin, Associate Professor in the Department of Gynecological Oncology and Reproductive Medicine at the Anderson Cancer Center. Unfortunately, not knowing the signs of ovarian cancer allows the disease to progress, making it more difficult to treat when detected.
According to the American Cancer Society, about 22,440 new cases of ovarian cancers will be diagnosed this year in the United States and 14,080 women will die from this disease. Ovarian cancer is more common in women over 60 years of age. In France, 4,500 new cases are diagnosed each year. Ovarian cancer is the fifth leading cause of cancer death in women, according to the American Cancer Society, and causes more deaths than any other cancer in the female reproductive system. It is therefore important to know the signs. “Women need to understand what the symptoms are and pay attention if they notice something is wrong,” says Dr. Deborah Lindner, Chief Medical Officer of Bright Pink,
Symptoms of Ovarian Cancer
Symptoms include abdominal pain, nausea, feeling satiated earlier than usual and inability to eat as much as usual, says Westin, adding that your pants may suddenly not be as well adjusted as they are, previously due to bloating. Frequent urination, digestive problems such as constipation, indigestion, gas, menstrual changes, unexplained weight gain or weight loss, pain during sexual intercourse and heartburn can also be symptoms of ovary.
Obviously, all these symptoms can be those of a series of diseases, but the duration and frequency is important, says Dr. Mian MK Shahzadn oncologist gynecologist at the Moffitt Cancer Center. For example, if you have pelvic pain that occurs once and you no longer feel it, it could be a sign of a more or less benign disease. But if you have pelvic pain more than 12 times a month and symptoms have started less than a year ago, it is important and necessary to report this to your doctor.
If you have any of the symptoms listed above and if they persist for two weeks or more, do not hesitate to consult and discuss your concerns with your doctor. It is imperative to do regular checks to detect the disease at an early stage. Earlier, ovarian cancer is diagnosed, the better it is treated.