Cancer is the leading cause of death in the world, causing 30% more deaths in Canada and France than any other disease or possible cause. Ovarian cancer was estimated to have 2,800 new cases and 1,750 deaths in Canada in 2016, compared with 4,000 new cases and 3,500 deaths per year in France. Knowing the symptoms of early ovarian cancer is one of the best ways to effectively fight this disease and increase the chances of healing.
What is ovarian cancer?
Ovarian cancer occurs when ovarian cells develop tumors that become cancerous. This type of cancer is known to be dangerous due to a lack of perceived symptoms and difficulty in being detected. Although more common in postmenopausal women, more and more cases show an increase in prevalence among women aged 30 to 40, perhaps even younger. Research in the UK has shown that early detection of cancer can dramatically increase your chances of survival, so paying attention to your body, regular medical checkups with your doctor are needed.
The particularity of ovarian cancer is that it is not silent, but discreet. There is currently no confidence test: tests do not detect cancerous cysts, and even CA125 blood tests sometimes give false results. Another problem is that many symptoms are confused with other illnesses such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), leaving undiagnosed early stage tumors until they reach phase 3 , where they may present as lumps in the abdomen and pelvic area.
New research shows that there are signs and symptoms of early stage ovarian cancer and as women you need to be careful and know when something is wrong.
4 Symptoms that can be signs of ovarian cancer:
- Permanent bloating
If you suffer from constant bloating (often for more than three weeks), something you did not have before, this could be a sign of cancerous tumor growth.
- Lower abdominal and pelvic pain
Think of all areas where you experience menstrual cramps – your lower abdomen, your pelvic area, maybe even in your lower back. While pain during menstruation is normal, persistent pain that clings long after your period is over (another three weeks or more) could be a sign of ovarian cancer.
- Difficulty eating / fasting
If you notice a significant decrease in your appetite for a period of more than three weeks without any apparent reason (examination, change of work, move or other event), talk to your doctor. While this may mean a variety of stomach and intestinal problems, it can also be related to cancer.
- Increased need for urination
If you find that you go to the bathroom at a much higher frequency than usual, even if you do not change the fluids, or if you feel well and a minute later you urgently need to urinate, then maybe you are in early stage of ovarian cancer.
All these symptoms can easily be confused with problems and diseases of the digestive tract. If you find that these symptoms last in time, it is important to monitor their frequency and persistence. If they do not disappear after three weeks or more, consult your doctor.