There are many types of cancer which will affect only one gender due to the differences in their physiology. Ovarian cancer is a common form of cancer that can only occur in women.
This cancer begins in one or both of the ovaries in the female reproductive system. The ovaries are responsible for creating hormones.
One of the dangers of ovarian cancer is that it often goes undetected unless it has advanced to other areas of the body or to a more serious case. Unfortunately, many people just don’t understand enough about this disease to be able to see what could potentially be wrong in their body. A light case of ovarian cancer can progress to advanced ovarian cancer without the person suffering from it even realizing! Hopefully, the following common questions and answers can help enlighten about ovarian cancer.
The 5 Important Questions
1: Are there different types of ovarian cancers?
A: There are actually three different types of ovarian cancer that a person might get. The first is the most common. Epithelial tumors begin in the tissue surrounding the ovaries. This type of tumor makes up about 9 of every 10 cases of ovarian cancer. Stromal tumors are the second type of ovarian cancer. These tumors start in the hormone production areas of the ovary. Germ cell tumors begin in the egg production area of the ovary. This type is the rarest, and tends to occur in women at an earlier stage.
2: What are some risk factors for getting ovarian cancer?
A: Ovarian cancer is typically more common in women of an advanced age. The most common time to get ovarian cancer is between the ages of 50 and 60. In addition, if someone has a family history of ovarian cancer, they should be more vigilant, as they are at a higher risk. Women who have to go through hormone replacement therapy are at a bigger risk. This is especially true of women who are undergoing long term hormone replacement therapy. Women who had their menstruation period start early or late can also be at risk, as it shows an abnormality.
3: Does ovarian cancer give off any symptoms?
A: Symptoms don’t often occur during the early stages of ovarian cancer. That can be part of the problem. It can grow and spread without the woman knowing. However, after it’s turned into advanced stage cancer, several symptoms can occur. Some women suffer from unexpected weight loss. Others feel discomfort throughout the pelvis. Other symptoms include feeling full very quickly when eating, or swelling and bloating in the abdomen. Bowel routines change and constipation can become common. The final symptom is needing to urinate frequently.
4: How does a doctor even figure out I have ovarian cancer?
A: The first step is probably going to be a pelvic exam. During the exam, the organs in the pelvis will be palpating and the doctor will attempt to visually determine as much as possible. From there, internal scans like CT and ultrasound will be needed to look at the ovaries directly. Blood tests are also common. From that information, a doctor can usually make a diagnosis. In cases where it’s still impossible, surgery could be required to remove an ovary to determine things for sure.
5: How is ovarian cancer treated?
A: There are many different treatments which can be chosen for ovarian cancer. Parp inhibitors are a type of enzyme that is used as a treatment for cancer, and in this case, parp ovarian cancer. There are many traditional types of treatments as well. Chemotherapy or targeted medication therapies are very common. Surgery can be required as well to remove one ovary, both, or even both ovaries and the uterus as well.