According to Mayo Clinic, the exact cause of ovarian cancer is uncertain. A low percentage of ovarian cancer cases are the result of an inherited gene mutation. The genes that elevate the risk of developing ovarian cancer are referred to as breast cancer gene 1 and breast cancer gene 2.
According to Mayo Clinic, risk factors that may elevate the risk of getting ovarian cancer include age, undergoing estrogen hormone replacement therapy, the age at which menstruation starts and ends, never being pregnant, fertility treatment, smoking, use of intrauterine devices, and polycystic ovary syndrome. Ovarian cancer most commonly occurs in women who are between the ages of 50 and 60. Females who started menstruating prior to age 12 or experienced menopause after 52 may have a higher ovarian cancer risk.