Ovarian cancer has silent symptoms. Here’s why you shouldn’t take it for granted

World Cancer Day: Stay vigilant and look out for symptoms of ovarian cancer as its occurrence is unpredictable and uncertain.
myths about ovarian cancer
Ovarian cancer is quite common among women. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
IANS Updated: 13 Oct 2023, 13:30 pm IST
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Cancer is something very unpredictable and uncertain. And when it comes to cancer among Indian women, ovarian cancer is the third most commonly detected cancer. What’s a greater cause of concern is that it has got silent symptoms.

Hence, it is extremely important for all you ladies out there to take care of yourselves by staying vigilant and going for regular health checkups. On the occasion of World Cancer Day today, doctors have given the same advice.

Ovarian cancer has largely been known to affect women in the post-menopausal phases i.e. between the age group of 50 to 70 years, although it has also been frequently observed in females of a younger age bracket with genetic disposition.

Although ovarian cancer starts in the ovaries, it has got the tendency to spread to surrounding pelvic organs, followed by upper abdominal organs and other organs like lungs.

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 When it comes to your body, you are the best judge. So, if you happen to notice any abnormality, especially with the abdomen, you must not take it for granted and schedule a visit to a medical expert.

Also, read: Breast cancer is an epidemic. Here’s how you can reduce your risk

Dr Shyam Aggarwal, Senior Consultant, Medical Oncology, Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in New Delhi says:

This fatal gynaecological disease is not easily detectable, as its symptoms are not prominent. A bloated stomach, frequent urination, longer bouts of acidity are some of the most common indirect signs which can be related to this condition. However, there are some direct symptoms of ovarian cancer such as abnormal vaginal bleeding, pain during sex, irregular and painful periods, a slight pain in the lower back and thighs, which are severe indicators but are detectable only at later stages.

A routine gynaecological checkup with methods such as the transvaginal ultrasound (TVUS) and the CA-125 blood test can help detect the malignancy in time.

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“If in time the right treatment is given to the patient, the survival rate in stage-I could be up to 90%. Though, if the detection is delayed, the survival rate drops,” added Aggarwal.

Timely detection and greater awareness can help in effective management and treatment of this disease, providing a quality living.

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