Any cancerous growth that begins in the ovary is known as ovarian cancer. It develops when abnormal cells in the ovary begin to multiply uncontrollably and form a tumour. It has the highest rate of deaths among the gynecological cancers affecting the uterus, cervix and ovaries. The tumour can spread to other parts of the body if we do not consult an oncologist for treatment.

Symptoms

There may be few or no symptoms in the early stages. Sometimes, the symptoms have resemblance with those of other conditions such as premenstrual syndrome (PMS), irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or a temporary bladder problem. The following are some early symptoms of ovarian cancer:

  • Pain in the lower part of the body including the lower abdomen and pelvis.
  • Pain in the back.
  • Heartburn or indigestion.
  • A feeling of fullness while eating.
  • Having frequent urge of urination
  • Constipation or changes in bowel habits
  • Pain during sexual intercourse

Some of the advanced symptoms are:

  • Weight loss
  • Tiredness
  • Nausea
  • Breathlessness
  • Loss of appetite

You should consult a cancer specialist in Kolkata if you feel any of these symptoms for more than a few weeks.

Causes

Family history

In comparison with other women, those with close relatives who have had ovarian or breast cancer have a higher chance of developing it.

Age

After menopause and especially in women above 63 years of age, most cases of ovarian cancer occur. Before the age of 40 years, it is rare.

Reproductive history

If a woman becomes pregnant before the age of 26 years, she has a lower risk of ovarian cancer. The risk also decreases on breastfeeding.

Birth control

The risk of ovarian cancer reduces when a woman uses the contraceptive pill for at least 3 to 6 months.

Infertility or fertility treatment

There is a link between a higher risk of ovarian cancer and fertility drugs. It is found especially in women who have used these drugs for more than one year without becoming pregnant.

Breast cancer

A woman has a higher chance of ovarian cancer if she is diagnosed with breast cancer.

Diagnosis

According to the oncology doctors in Kolkata, there are various tests available for its diagnosis. Laparoscopy, colonoscopy, imaging tests, blood tests, biopsy and abdominal fluid aspiration are some of them.

Treatment

A number of factors should be considered while deciding the mode of treatment to be taken. They are type of ovarian cancer, its stage and grade. Surgery, chemotherapy, targeted chemotherapy, hormone therapy and radiation therapy are the options for mode of treatment.