How do you detect ovarian cancer?


Quick Answer

Ovarian cancer is difficult to detect because it causes few noticeable symptoms in its early stages, according to Mayo Clinic. Symptoms may include abdominal swelling, feeling full faster, weight loss, pelvic discomfort, frequent urination and constipation. Other symptoms may come in the form of back pain and irregular vaginal bleeding, reports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Full Answer

If, on a daily basis, a woman notices pelvic pain, bloating, or urinary frequency or urgency, or she feels full after eating small quantities of food, and the symptoms are unusual for her, she should get in touch with a gynecologist, notes WebMD. These vague symptoms are the earliest signs of ovarian cancer.

Swelling of the leg is a possible symptom of ovarian cancer, and clothes may not fit so well on the body due to bloating, notes MedicineNet. Fatigue is indicative of this type of cancer along with labored breathing. A change in bowel habits is another red flag.

A woman may feel the need to urinate but cannot actually expel urine, according to About.com. Daily bloating is an early symptom. Pelvic pain may happen when a woman is not ovulating or menstruating. The pelvic pain may be severe or may present as a dull aching sensation.

A visit to the doctor is necessary if the signs persist for two weeks or more, as reported by the CDC. Treatment is possible if the cancer and symptoms are diagnosed early.

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