Ovarian Cancer

Ovarian Cancer

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Ovarian Cancer

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The ovary is a part of the female reproductive system. It releases eggs and produces the female sex hormones responsible for reproduction. There are a pair of ovaries present in women. Ovarian cancer occurs when there is a growth of cancerous cells in the ovaries. Ovarian cancer has become the fifth most common cause of cancer-related death among women due to cancer.

What is Ovarian Cancer?

The ovary is a part of the female reproductive system. It releases eggs and produces the female sex hormones responsible for reproduction. There are a pair of ovaries present in women. Ovarian cancer occurs when there is a growth of cancerous cells in the ovaries. Ovarian cancer has become the fifth most common cause of cancer-related death among women due to cancer. 

 

Cause of Ovarian Cancer

Although, there is no clear evidence about the cause of ovarian cancer. But some factors may increase the risk of getting ovarian cancer. Ovarian cancer is caused due to the alteration in the information in the DNA of the ovarian cells. Because of this alteration, the cells of the ovaries divide uncontrollably and cause cancer.

 

Symptoms of Ovarian Cancer

Signs and Symptoms

  1. In many cases, there may be very few or no symptoms during the initial stage of the disease. Symptoms of ovarian cancer might be similar to Irritable Bowel Syndrome and temporary bladder problems. However, in ovarian cancer, the symptoms show persistence and worsen.Some of the symptoms of ovarian cancer are:
  2. Swelling in the abdomen
  3. Bleeding from the vagina without having periods
  4. Feeling full without eating much
  5. Change in urination pattern like increase or decrease in urination
  6. Feeling of constipation
  7. Pain in the abdomen and lower back
  8. Weight Loss
  9. Difficulty in eating
  10. Indigestion

Expert Doctors

Dr. Sowjanya Aggarwal

Infertility and IVF, Obstetrics And Genecology

19+ Years

Experience

97%

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Dr. Renu Keshan Mathur

Obstetrics and Gynaecology

36+ Years

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100%

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NABH Accredited Hospitals

Akanksha IVF Centre, Janakpuri
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Akanksha IVF Centre, Janakpuri

4.9/5( Ratings)
A - 3/7
BH Salvas Hospital
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BH Salvas Hospital

4.8/5( Ratings)
Chandan Palace

Diagnosis of Ovarian Cancer

The doctor may diagnose ovarian cancer through the following techniques:

  1. Pelvic exam: The doctor will insert the gloved fingers in the vagina and simultaneously press the abdomen to feel your pelvic region. The doctor may also examine the external genitals visually for confirmation.
  2. Blood test: A blood test is done to detect the tumour that will indicate the presence of ovarian cancer. Through the blood test, the doctor determines the presence of a protein that is present on the surface of ovarian cancer cells.
  3. Imaging test: Imaging tests such as CT scans and MRI scans will help to see the internal picture of the organ. It will help to detect any tumour in the pelvic region.
  4. Biopsy: In complicated cases, detection of cancer is not so easy. In such cases, doctors obtain a small tissue sample and evaluate it to determine the presence of any cancer cells. 
  5. Test of genes: Ovarian cancer is also caused genetically. The doctors may take a blood sample and send it for genetic testing to determine if the patient has an increased risk of developing ovarian cancer.

Once the above tests are done, the doctors will evaluate the reports and determine the cancer stage. After that, the team of doctors will start a suitable treatment for it.

 

Treatment options for Ovarian Cancer

Treatment Options for Ovarian Cancer

The doctor develops the treatment strategy according to the stage of cancer. In most cases, the doctor suggests a combination of therapies. Some of the treatment options for ovarian cancer are:

Surgery: Following types of surgical procedures are used.

Surgery to remove ovaries: If cancer is present in either one or both ovaries, that ovary is removed through surgery. Uterus remains intact in this procedure.

Surgery to remove ovaries and uterus: If cancer has spread to the uterus and fallopian tube, the doctor removes the uterus, fallopian tube, and ovaries. As the uterus is removed during the surgery, the woman would be unable to get pregnant in future.

Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy involves the administration of drugs used to kill cancerous cells. It is usually done after surgery to remove any remaining cancerous cells. But it can also be used before surgery. 

Hormone Therapy: Some cancer cells use hormones, such as oestrogen, to grow. Hormone therapy is used to stop the effect of hormones on cancerous ovarian cells in the body. Hormonal therapy is recommended in slow-growing ovarian cancers. The doctor may also advise this therapy in case of ovarian cancer recurrence.

Immunotherapy: Immune system fights against the cancer cells and stops their growth. However, cancer cells produce a specific protein that helps them hide from the immune cells and develop into a tumour. Immunotherapy blocks the process through which cancer cells hide from the immune system.

Targeted therapy: Targeted therapy attacks a specific target in the cancer cells, resulting in their death. After analysing the cancerous cells, the doctor determines the suitable targeted treatment.

Benefits of Ovarian Cancer

Benefits of Ovarian Treatment

1) It helps decrease in cancer progression

Risk and Delay in Treatment

1)Left untreated, ovarian cancer can spread to other parts of the body. There are 3 types of ovarian cancer

Disclaimer: The information provided here is for educational and learning purposes only. It doesn't cover every medical condition and might not be relevant to your personal situation. This information isn't medical advice, isn't meant for diagnosing any condition, and shouldn't replace talking to a certified medical or healthcare professional.

Reviewer

Dr. Arti Sharma

Dr. Arti Sharma

MBBS, DNB Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Diploma In Cosmetic Gynaecology

8 Years Experience

Dr Arti Sharma is a well-known Obstetrician and Cosmetic Gynaecologist currently associated with Aesthetica Veda in Bengaluru. She has 8 years of experience in Obstetrics and Cosmetic Gynaecology and worked as an expert Obstetrician...View More

Author

Sangeeta Sharma

Sangeeta Sharma

BSc. Biochemistry I MSc. Biochemistry (Oxford College Bangalore)

6 Years Experience

She has extensive experience in content and regulatory writing with reputed organisations like Sun Pharmaceuticals and Innodata. Skilled in SEO and passionate about creating informative and engaging medical conten...View More

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