Warning Signs of Ovarian Cancer

Warning Signs of Ovarian Cancer

Twitter name @ActivityRocket just sent me a message saying that I had to read this month’s Prevention magazine.  There’s a GREAT article called “Is It Just Bloating OR CANCER?  Warning Signs Your Doctor May Miss”.  It’s about ovarian cancer.

The article starts off like this….

“What if there were a cancer that had virtually no symptoms (or so everyone told you)?  What if there were no routine screenings (or ones your insurer won’t cover)?  What if any symptoms you tried to report were dismissed by your doctor as vague or benign complaints?  And what if, when that cancer was finally detected, it would almost certainly be too late to save you, and you’d be told you had only about 5 years to live?  Now, what if that cancer could have been treated, and could have been cured with very little muss and fuss?  Would you be mad as hell?  Sure you would- and you should be. There’s no “what if” about it.  This is the reality of ovarian cancer today.”  (BTW, I know this article is about ovarian cancer… but this pretty much describes what happened with Alan’s sarcoma too.)


Here’s the dealio (as my daughter always says)…
It is estimated that over 21,000 women a year are diagnosed with ovarian cancer.  And ovarian cancer takes the lives of 2 out of 3 women diagnosed. But if ovarian cancer is caught in it’s early stages (Stage 1 and still confined to the ovary), a woman has up to a 94% chance of long term survival.  But today, more than 70% of women with ovarian cancer aren’t diagnosed until the disease has advanced to Stage III or Stage IV.

So what can we can do about this?  We need to know our own bodies… learn to spot the signs…. and be our own advocates…. 
Signs & symptoms of ovarian cancer may include:

  • Pain in your pelvis or abdomen
  • A strong or frequent need to urinate
  • Abdominal bloating or swelling
  • Loss of appetite or a tendency to feel full quickly
  • Persistant indigestion, gas or nausea
  • Changes in bowel habits, such as constipation
  • Increased abdominal girth or clothes fitting tighter around your waist
  • A persistant lack of energy
  • Low back pain

Got symptoms?  Get tested!

Symptoms of ovarian cancer are not specific to this disease, and often mimic digestive or bladder problem.  However, if you have any of these symptoms as often as 3 times a week over a period of several months to a year, OR if you have a family history of reproductive cancer, tell your doctor and ask for an exam, a transvaginal ultrasound and/or a blood test.  And if your doctor dismisses your concerns, find a new doctor!

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One thought on “Warning Signs of Ovarian Cancer

  1. cancerhawk Post author

    Breast Investigators said…

    Great Post, Robyn! Would you be interested in reposting this on http://www.breastinvestigators.com? I’m hoping to help color September in Teal.

    BTW, I love your website, your posts and all that you are doing. Thanks for all your hard work and passion. ~Angela Long


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