A condition in which the abnormal cells present in the ovary multiply beyond control and form a tumor is known as ovarian cancer. If the cancer is not identified and treated timely, it can grow and spread to distant parts of the body. When this happens, the condition is known as metastatic ovarian cancer.
Early symptoms of ovarian cancer
There are several symptoms associated with ovarian cancer that can be overlooked. This can happen for the simple reason that these symptoms are similar to that of other diseases. Also, these symptoms might come and go, and hence, one might not identify them as something serious. The early symptoms of ovarian cancer are as follows:
- Bloating, pain, and pressure in the abnormal area
- Feeling of fullness after eating, which is abnormal.
- Not being able to eat without difficulty.
- Increase the frequency of urination
- Frequent urges to urinate
Some other symptoms associated with ovarian cancer include the following:
- Tiredness or fatigue
- Problems with digestion
- Pain in the back
- Irregularities in the menstrual cycle
- Pain during intercourse
- Dermatomyositis – a rare condition that leads to weakness in the muscles, skin rash, and inflammation in the muscles
The underlying causes of these symptoms can be many and not just ovarian cancer. Several women experience these symptoms at some of the other points in their lives. In most cases, these symptoms are temporary and get treated with easy treatment options. However, treating cancer becomes extremely easy when it is detected at the early stages. Therefore, if you have been experiencing any of these symptoms and suspect something abnormal, you must consult your doctor.
In case the symptoms are being caused due to ovarian cancer, they will persist. As the tumor will grow in size, the symptoms will become more evident and severe. By then, the tumor would have grown to a considerable amount of size, and the cancer cells would have invaded other parts of the body. Therefore, if you think you are at risk and some symptoms start to show, you must immediately consult a doctor.
Risk factors of ovarian cancer
The cause of ovarian cancer might not be known by now. However, several factors increase the risk of getting the condition. The risk factors of ovarian cancer can include the following:
Age is one of the main risk factors for ovarian cancer. Many women diagnosed with the condition have already hit their menopause. Women aged 55 years or older are at a higher risk of developing the disease. Also, women in their 40s or 50s are most likely to get diagnosed.
- Family history
Women who have a family history of ovarian or breast cancer are also at a greater risk of developing the condition. Therefore, if there is a family history, you must get genetic counseling done and talk to your doctor about preventive treatment options.