If you are dealing with issues like pelvic pain or abnormal bleeding, your first thought probably will not be that you have ovarian cancer. Ovarian cancer signs are often very subtle and similar to symptoms of other problems, so it is very easy for you or your doctor to miss them at first. You need to keep an eye out for these seven ovarian cancer symptoms so you can get it diagnosed and start treatment as soon as possible.
If you have pain that comes and goes for more than a week or so, you may need to visit a doctor. This symptom normally does not show up until your ovarian cancer has spread, so it is particularly concerning. Women may notice both abdominal and pelvic pain, so you might have discomfort anywhere from your bowel to your diaphragm.
Dr. Mitchel Hoffman from the Moffit Cancer Center explains that the ovaries tend to grow as cancer develops. There is limited space in your abdomen, so the enlarged ovaries can press against your bladder. This can lead you to need frequent bathroom trips.
Your Period Is Irregular
This is a big sign of ovarian cancer because it is an indicator that something is going wrong in your reproductive system. Ovarian tumors may throw your hormones out of balance and affect your menstruation cycle. Some women get more frequent periods while others have fewer or no periods. Bleeding may be abnormally light or unusually heavy.
Research from a 2008 study reported that this was the most commonly noticed out of all ovarian cancer signs among women with ovarian cancer. Unlike the normal bloating that can happen after a big meal, swelling associated with ovarian cancer tends to be persistent and not fade away. It happens because fluid builds up in your abdominal cavity. All of the fluid buildups can make you have trouble fitting into your clothes, and it may result in abdominal or pelvic pain.
The cancerous overgrowths in the ovaries can greatly impair your normal bowel movements. You may find it difficult to use the bathroom as often as you usually do, and some pain may be associated with it.
Because ovarian cancer messes with your hormones, you may end up with a dryness that can make any sort of lovemaking painful and uncomfortable. If the tumor grows downwards, it may end up spreading to your uterus or other regions, resulting in more discomfort.
Nausea and Sensations of Fullness
Because ovarian cancer impacts your bowels, things tend to get a little backed up every now and then. This may lead to feeling uncomfortably full after eating very small portions, and you might get queasy or experience heartburn if you try to keep eating after you start feeling full.
Ovarian cancer is often called a silent killer because women do not notice the ovarian cancer signs until it is too late. However, this does not mean that symptoms do not exist at all. By paying attention to your body and getting regular health exams, you can catch this cancer while it is still in earlier stages.