March is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month and to mark the month, the national ovarian cancer charity, Target Ovarian Cancer, is raising awareness of the signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer, by encouraging everyone to tell 50 people about the symptoms of ovarian cancer, which currently affects around one in 50 women.
Previous studies have shown that only 3% of women feel confident in identifying symptoms of ovarian cancer which include:
- Persistent pelvic or abdominal pain
- Increased abdominal size/persistent bloating
- Difficulty eating or feeling full quickly
- Changes in bladder habits, such as urinary frequency or urgency
It is important that if women have these symptoms, which are persisting over a period of time, that they contact the GP for assessment.
Dr Clare McKenzie, RCOG Vice President for Education said:
“Every year in the UK, ovarian cancer is diagnosed in over 7000 women and causes approximately 4300 deaths. This is a result of the fact that women present with advanced disease. Earlier detection is key to reducing the number of deaths.
“Ovarian cancer can be a challenging disease to recognise and diagnose as some of the symptoms are similar to those seen in common conditions such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome and currently there is no simple test to diagnose ovarian cancer.
“It is crucial that women are aware of the key symptoms of ovarian cancer as well as recognising the risk factors which include; being over 50 years of age and having a close family history of breast and ovarian cancer.
“Survival rates can be over 90% for women diagnosed at the earliest stage of ovarian cancer and we urge any woman experiencing any worrying symptoms to visit their GP. Early diagnosis is vital and can save lives.”
28 February 2014
For further information, please contact the RCOG Media and PR team on +44 20 7772 6300 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about ovarian cancer, visit the Target Ovarian Cancer website and read the NICE guideline on recognition and initial management of ovarian cancer.
The RCOG has Scientific Impact Papers on Targeted therapies for the management of ovarian cancer and Ovarian cancer, optimum surgery in advanced-stage.