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Talking About Ovarian Cancer

Women have two ovaries that produce eggs. Every month each ovary produces an egg, and it happens alternatively. If sperm reaches the egg, fertilization occurs, and the zygote gets implanted in the uterus. Sometimes your ovaries might start to replicate in an unprogrammed manner, and its cell growth occurs abnormally- a condition known as ovarian cancer. Your ovaries also produce the hormones estrogen and progesterone, the female hormones that regulate the menstrual cycle and play a role in pregnancy.

Ovarian cancer needs to be treated as soon as possible. If left untreated, it can travel to other body organs- a condition known as metastases. Ovarian cancer is sometimes hard to diagnose earlier. Women often mix up their symptoms with their menstrual cycle and do not become apparent. Very few cases of ovarian cancer are diagnosed at earlier stages. If you have any of its symptoms, you must seek professional help. To get an expert opinion, consult an Oncologist in Lahore.

 What Are The Signs Of Ovarian Cancer?

The early signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer might get missed because you might not realize them. They may be easy to miss and dismiss. For ovarian cancer, there is no routine examination. Therefore it becomes hard to detect.

 Most symptoms become apparent when the disease progresses. However, they can occur in earlier stages as well. The common symptoms that occur with ovarian cancer are:

  • Abdominal pain and pressure
  • Bloating
  • Difficulty eating food
  • An increased urge to urinate and increased urination

 You might mix up these symptoms with other symptoms of your menstrual cycle or other benign conditions. However, it is essential to note that with ovarian cancer, these symptoms will be persistent and will not go away. While with other benign health conditions, they would last long. With ovarian cancer, there will also be a change in these symptoms with normal sensations. If you have been experiencing these symptoms for more than 12 months, you must visit the healthcare provider soon.

 If not detected at an early stage, ovarian cancer may show the following signs and symptoms later on:

  • Back pain
  • Fatigue and lethargy
  • Indigestion
  • Menstrual irregularities- you might experience bleeding out of your menstrual cycle.
  • Dyspareunia- a condition in which sexual intercourse becomes painful
  • Dermatomyositis- is a rare inflammatory condition in which you have muscle weakness, inflamed muscles, and skin rashes.
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Constipation or diarrhea- changes in bowel habits

If these symptoms are due to ovarian cancer, they will persist. Mostly they become more severe as the tumor becomes bigger and spreads to other parts. When it spreads from outside the ovaries, it becomes difficult to treat.

 The severe symptoms of ovarian cancer occur when it remains untreated for a long time and has spread to various body parts.

 The severe symptoms of ovarian cancer are:
  • Pleural effusion- fluid build-up around the lungs
  • Ascites- fluid buildup around the abdomen
  • Bowel obstruction- blockage or obstruction of the digestive tract

 With these conditions, other symptoms may also occur. The common symptoms of pleural effusion are cough, breathlessness, and chest pain.

 Ovarian Cancer And Postmenopausal Symptoms

The symptoms of ovarian cancer often resemble post and premenopausal symptoms. However, a big difference between them is bleeding.

You get menopause when you do not get periods straight for 12 months. If you have vaginal bleeding after menopause, it can be due to ovarian cancer. Therefore if you have the same complaint, you must visit your gynecologist soon.

Ovarian cancer is common among women over the age of 60. You must keep an eye on your symptoms if you have got menopause and experiencing unexplained vaginal bleeding. Please do not misconstrue it with periods.

What Are The Types Of Ovarian Cancer?

Your ovaries are made up of three different types of cells. Cancer is based on the type of cell it affects. Therefore ovarian cancer can be classified into three types, such as:

  • Epithelial ovarian carcinoma- is the cancer of the cells that line the outside of the ovaries.
  • Stromal tumors- it is the cancer of the hormone-producing cells of the ovaries
  • Germ cell tumors- it is the cancer of egg-producing cells. Germ cell tumors are rare.
The Bottom Line

Ovarian cancer, if detected early, can be treated well. But if detected at later stages, it might become difficult to treat. Therefore if you have any symptoms of ovarian cancer, you must seek professional help. To get an expert opinion, you can consult an Oncologist in Rawalpindi.

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