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by OvarianCancerAware category: Health
Ovarian cancer is the fourth most common form of cancer death in women, after breast, lung and bowel cancer. However, the average GP will see only one case of ovarian cancer every five years.
Each year in the UK there are approximately
Most women are diagnosed once the cancer has already spread which makes treatment more challenging. The current five-year survival rate for ovarian cancer is 43%. If diagnosed at the earliest stage, up to 90 per cent of women would survive five years or more. This is why early diagnosis is so important.
The two most important aspects affecting a woman’s risk of developing ovarian cancer during her lifetime are age, and family history.
There are a number of things which significantly reduce a woman’s risk of developing ovarian cancer, but none offer complete protection.
The symptoms of ovarian cancer are often similar to those of other less serious but more common conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome. However the increased frequency and persistency of the symptoms are what help to distinguish between ovarian cancer and other conditions. It should be noted that women over the age of 50 rarely develop irritable bowel syndrome, and should a GP think this is the case, they should make sure they have considered other causes such as ovarian cancer.
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March is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month in the UK and in order to spread the symptoms the following charities Target Ovarian Cancer, Ovarian Cancer Action, Ovacome, & The Eve Appeal have come together on the last day of the month.