Ovarian cancer affects about 250,000 worldwide women annually, with 140,000 deaths in the same year. This cancer is among the most difficult to diagnose. He remains silent for a long time. Its symptoms appear as the tumor spreads through the body.
Characteristics of ovarian cancer:
The ovaries are female genital glands responsible for reproduction. They have a dual function: to ensure the production of eggs and to stimulate the hormonal secretion.
Ovarian cancer occurs when ovarian cells form malignant (cancerous) tumors that can damage and destroy all other cells in the genital tract. These tumors can spread to other organs and give birth to new cancers (uterus, liver, lung, ...).
Ovarian cancer, a disease that hides:
Ovarian cancer develops in silence. Indeed, it is difficult to detect or recognize its symptoms, especially in early phases. Its signs only appear when the disease reaches an advanced stage.
What are its risk factors?
Several factors may increase the risk of developing ovarian cancer.
The hereditary factor: the presence of cancer in one or several blood relatives (paternal or maternal).
No Pregnancy or Childbirth: Women who have never been pregnant are more likely to have ovarian cancer. The reason is that the hormones present during the pregnancy have a protective effect. Thus, the secretion of estrogen increases 20 times more in early pregnancy and 300 times more at the end, this hormone helps to stimulate and energize the female organism. In addition, the secretion of progesterone multiplies by 1,000 during pregnancy. Its role is to calm and limit natural contractions
Lynch syndrome: a synonym for hereditary colorectal cancer without polyposis. It is a hereditary genetic disorder that increases the risk of cancer of the ovaries, colon, endometrium, urinary tract, among others.
Ovarian cancer is not easy to recognize. However, there are fairly clear warning signs that may indicate its existence.
4 signs of ovarian cancer:
Frequent bloating: this unexplained digestive disorder may be associated with ovarian cancer in case its frequency exceeds 3 times a week or more. It manifests in the form of swelling of the belly, frequent constipation, sensation of rapid satiety ...
Pain in lower pelvic and abdominal areas: feeling pain out of the menstrual cycle can be a sign of ovarian cancer. Tell your doctor if you experience severe pain during menstruation (pelvic area, lower abdomen and lower back).
Loss of appetite: If you suddenly lose your appetite without having changed your lifestyle, it is best to consult your doctor. Even if this sounds more like an intestinal disorder. This can also be a sign of ovarian cancer.
Urgent need to urinate: feeling the urge to urinate may indicate the presence of ovarian cancer, especially if this desire is not due to a high consumption of fluids.
Be vigilant with the signs cited above, they can be easily confused with the symptoms of a simple digestive function dysfunction. If you experience any of these signs, talk to your doctor.