Cancer is a deadly word and the moment it is spoken everyone gets frightened and worried. One such cancer that is on a rise amongst females is ovarian cancer. Females tend to experience Ovarian cancer symptoms when there is an abnormal and uncontrollable growth of cells in their ovary. This cancer originates in the ovaries or the fallopian tubes around the ovary in a woman. More than other kinds of cancers, ovarian cancer has become the reason for death for females due to cancer.
Let us dig deeper to understand the early signs of ovarian cancer and what are the main ovarian cancer risk factors.
What is Ovarian Cancer?
Cancer is an abnormal growth of cells in the body, when such an abnormal growth takes place in the ovaries, it is called ovarian cancer. Ovaries are the main part of a female’s reproductive system that produces eggs. Ovaries are connected to the fallopian tubes and linked to the uterus. Ovarian cancer takes place when there is a growth of malignant or benign tumors in the ovaries that pose a threat to your overall health. If left untreated, cancer may soon spread to other parts of the body, so treating it after catching the early signs of ovarian cancer becomes crucial.
Ovarian Cancer Types
There are three main types of ovarian cancers, depending on the types of ovarian cancer symptoms and your doctor would be the best person to tell which type has affected you:
1. Epithelial Ovarian Cancer
The most common type of ovarian cancer is epithelial ovarian cancer, which includes mucinous carcinoma and serous carcinoma.
2. Germ Cell Tumors
This one is a rare ovarian cancer that affects women at a young age.
3. Stromal Tumors
It is a rare ovarian cancer type and gets easily detected with early signs of ovarian cancer in the earlier stage.
Signs of Ovarian Cancer
Since ovarian cancer starts in the small organs of a female reproductive system where eggs are generated, detecting it becomes hard. Moreover, sometimes it doesn’t even show any symptoms at all until a woman reaches the last stages.
Following are the common ovarian cancer symptoms every woman should be aware of:
- Discomfort and pain in the pelvis and abdomen region
- Change in appetite
- Bloating and belching of stomach
- Vaginal discharge or abnormal menstrual bleeding
- Urinary Incontinence
- Increase in the size of the abdomen
- Constant fatigue and back pain
- Abnormal weight loss
- Changes to bowel movements, diarrhea, and constipation
Causes of Ovarian Cancer
Talking about what causes ovarian cancer in women, we can say the following reasons are the most common causes of such cancer:
- Never Conceived
- Suffered Endometriosis
- Suffered from Breast, Colorectal, and Uterine Cancer
- Family History of Ovarian Cancer
- Females with an Eastern European Jewish Background
Ovarian Cancer Risk Factors
There are several risk factors associated with ovarian cancer that may lead to this fatal disease such as:
- Endometriosis: It is one of the major ovarian cancer risk factors, where a tissue just similar to the one found inside the uterus is found outside the uterus.
- Never being Pregnant: Besides, those females who have never conceived and got pregnant are also most likely to suffer from ovarian cancer symptoms.
- Family History: Another main risk factor of ovarian cancer is for women who had someone in the blood relation who suffered from the same disease.
Postmenopausal Hormone Replacement Therapy
- Inherited Gene Changes: Besides, some cases of ovarian cancer are also caused due to inherited genes from the parents. These genes include BRCA1 and BRCA2.
- Older Age: You may not know but ovarian cancer symptoms are often seen in women in older age as compared to women at a younger age.
- Age of starting or ending of Menstruation: Women who are at the starting or ending age of their menstruation are also at a higher risk of suffering from ovarian cancer.
- Obesity: Women who are obese and have a higher BMI are also at a higher risk of developing ovarian cancer.
The Bottom Line
Women should never take their health lightly especially if they discover some abnormal patterns in their menstrual cycles. You never know when these small symptoms become relatable to cancers like ovarian cancer. If you can detect the early signs of ovarian cancer, chances are higher for you to survive with timely treatment. At the same time, you may reduce the risk of getting affected by this deadly cancer by talking to your doctor about some birth control pills or other measures.