Ovarian cancer occurs around the female reproductive system. Typically arising from the cells near the ovary and fallopian tubes. Feeling pain in which area could signal the disease?
The ovaries are two small organs – the size and shape of an almond – located in the pelvis (lower part of the torso), just behind the pubic area.
Their function is to produce the female hormones oestrogen and progesterone.
They also create, store and release eggs. The eggs then flow down the fallopian tube into the womb – ready for fertilisation.
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As a woman matures, menopause occurs when the ovaries stop releasing eggs.
Feeling abdominal pain, or pain in the pelvis, is an indication that something isn’t right.
Classified as one symptom of ovarian cancer, another is persistent bloating.
Charity Target Ovarian Cancer regards feeling full quickly and (or) loss of appetite as another symptom of the disease.
Additionally, urinary signs such as needing to wee more urgently or more often than normal could be a sign of ovarian cancer.
Occasionally, there could be other symptoms such as changes in bowel habits (constipation or diarrhoea), extreme fatigue and unexplained weight loss.
These symptoms can either be new (they aren’t normal for you), frequent – happening more than 12 times in a month – or persistent, as in they don’t ever go away.
The charity states: “Any bleeding after the menopause should always be investigated by a GP.”
To investigate frequent and persistent symptoms, the GP should order a CA125 blood test.
An ultrasound scan of your stomach and ovaries may also be ordered.
Target Ovarian Cancer states: “The sooner ovarian cancer is detected, the easier it is to treat.
“Survival can be up to 90 percent for women in the UK diagnosed at the earliest stage.”
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Remember not to rely on smear tests – also known as cervical screening tests – to identify ovarian cancer.
These routine check-ups are available for women between the ages of 25 to 64, and serve a different purpose.
The purpose of a smear test is to check the health of the cervix.
The charity reports that 7,300 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer in the UK each year.
Advancing age is one risk factor for developing the disease, with women over 50 at an increased risk.
Up to 20 percent of cases are believed to be caused by an inherited faulty gene (BRCA1 or BRCA2).
And there’s a link between being overweight and developing ovarian cancer.
As is, peculiarly, using talcum powder between the legs.
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