February marks Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.
Ovarian cancer is the eighth most common cancer in women in Australia, with about 1,400 women diagnosed each year.
Sadly, survival rates are still low — only 44 per cent of women who are diagnosed with ovarian cancer will survive for five years.
Ovarian cancer may not cause symptoms in its early stages, which means the cancer is often diagnosed at an advanced stage.
If the cancer has spread to other parts of the body, it can be even more difficult to treat successfully.
You can lower your risk of ovarian cancer by:
While the symptoms of ovarian cancer can be vague and hard to recognise, it’s important for women to be aware of them. They include:
These symptoms do not necessarily mean you have cancer – they might be caused by another health condition.
If you have these symptoms and they are new for you, are severe or continue for more than a few weeks, it is best to arrange a check-up.
Keep a record of how often the symptoms occur and make an appointment to see your general practitioner.
For more information, go to our Ovarian Cancer section.