- This year, 28,000 women in the U.S. will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer
- A Pap smear is NOT a test for ovarian cancer: A Pap smear detects cervical cancer
- There is no reliable screening method for detecting ovarian cancer
- Currently, most women are diagnosed with an advanced stage of the disease
- If ovarian cancer is detected early; it is a manageable disease with a much higher survival rate
- Family medical history can provide essential clues to a predisposition to ovarian and other female cancers
- The risk of ovarian cancer increases with age, especially around the time of menopause
- Symptoms are subtle, persistent and usually increase over time
Ovarian Cancer Symptoms
Ovarian cancer usually presents with a constellation of symptoms including:
- Abdominal pressure, bloating or discomfort, feeling "full"
- Constipation, diarrhea/changes in bowel function
- Frequent urination/changes in bladder patterns
- Nausea, indigestion and/or gas
- Abnormal bleeding
- Shortness of breath
- Unusual fatigue/backaches
- Unexpected weight gain, increased abdominal circumference
- Unexpected weight loss
Symptoms may be experienced by women at some point in their lives, and usually do not indicate ovarian cancer. However, if symptoms persist for three weeks or more with no diagnosable cause, contact your doctor and ask about ovarian cancer.
Hope on the Horizon
- Family medical history can provide essential clues to a predisposition to ovarian and other female cancers. Women need to become more aware of their medical history and assess their risks for breast, uterine and eudiometrical cancers. Through OROC's website and the development of other educational materials, OROC hopes to raise ovarian cancer awareness.
- OROC also hopes to ensure that early-detection testing will become part of an annual gynecological exam--just like mammograms are for breast cancer.
- Cleveland medical researchers are leading national research efforts into ovarian and other female cancers. We live in a community with institutions and people that can make a world of difference. Access the complete list of physicians and medical experts on OROC's Medical Advisory Board.
- OROC strives to put a new face on ovarian cancer--one of hope and encouragement.