September is Ovarian Cancer Month
There are 17,000 women living with ovarian cancer in Canada. It is estimated that this year in Canada, 2,600 women will be newly diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Ovarian cancer is the 5th most common cancer for women and is the most fatal women’s cancer.
Symptoms associated with ovarian cancer are often vague, non-specific and can be mistakenly attributed to other causes. These symptoms can often be experienced by women without ovarian cancer.
Common symptoms include:
1.Bloating – increased abdominal size/persistent bloating
2.Eating – difficulty eating or feeling full quickly
3.Pain – in pelvic or abdominal areas
4.Urinary symptoms – urgency or frequency
Occasionally there can be other symptoms such as changes in bowel habits, extreme fatigue or unexplained weight loss. Just because you have the symptoms does not mean you have ovarian cancer.
However, if the symptoms are:
•Frequent – they usually happen more than 12 times a month
•Persistent – they have been present for more than 3 weeks
•New – they are not normal for you and may have started in the last year
…then it is important that you see your doctor.