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Ovarian Cancer

The ovary is part of the female reproductive system which is responsible for producing eggs, as well as the female hormones - oestrogen and progesterone. Ovarian cancer develops when there is uncontrolled cell growth in the ovaries. While it is rarer than breast or cervical cancer, it is more lethal and there are currently no effective screening methods for the disease.

Types of Ovarian Cancer

  • Epithelial ovarian cancer - It spreads to the lining and organs of the pelvis and abdomen. Most common type of ovarian cancer comprising 90% of total ovarian cancer cases.

  • Germ cell ovarian cancer - Tumours may appear in the egg-producing cells of ovaries. Teenage girls and women in their 20s are most prone to this type of ovarian cancer.

  • Sex cord-stromal ovarian cancer - Develops from the stroma tissue cells that produce the hormones oestrogen and progesterone. 60-95% of such cases are diagnosed at Stage 1 and is treatable by surgery alone. 


Recognising the Symptoms

  • Abdominal/pelvic pain

  • Abdominal bloating or feeling of pressure 

  • Back pain

  • Pain during sexual intercourse

  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding

  • More frequent and urgent urination

  • Indigestion or heartburn

  • Unexplained weight gain/loss

  • Feeling of fullness even after a light meal

  • Changes in bowel movement, such as constipation

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