Ovarian Cancer Signs & Tests

Ovarian cancer is a cancer that affects the ovaries of a woman. It is a serious and life threatening condition, though not as common as cervical cancer. The treatment method involves surgical removal of the ovaries and surrounding areas depending on the extent of the cancer and a combination of chemotherapy and radiation.

The most common problem in diagnosing ovarian cancer is the symptoms that are most often confused with other conditions like irritable bowel syndrome, indigestion and even depression. It is very important to diagnose the situation early on so that the cancer does not reach a terminal stage and prevent the chance of recovery and life of the person.

How Do I Diagnose The Symptoms Of Ovarian Cancer?

Though the symptoms are often very confusing, you must never put off a visit to the doctor if you feel that something is wrong.

Problems In Digestion

Women who have ovarian cancer that remains undetected will be faced with frequent bouts of indigestion that do not go away. Natural remedies and over the counter medications will not offer any solace in such cases and the symptoms will seem to worsen with passing time. Women will also feel frequent feelings of bloating and pressure inside the abdominal area. Excessive gas will lead to abdominal pain and sometimes nausea as well. There would also be frequent episodes of constipation in such women.

Frequent Urination

Frequent urination can be due to many things like a urinary tract infection or diabetes. But with ovarian cancer, the frequency of urination increases due to the pressure exerted by the cancerous growth in the bladder, causing bladder pressure, resulting in frequent urination. The need for urination will be urgent, failing which incontinence occurs.

Pelvic And Back Pain

A major symptom of ovarian cancer is back pain and pain in the pelvic area. The pain in the pelvic area will be dull and constant. Pelvic pain is felt more during the time of intercourse as well. Women who have ovarian cancer will also have back pain, concentrated in the lower back area.

Extreme Fatigue

All cancer will have fatigue as a symptom due to the abnormal changes happening in the body. Constant fatigue without any other reason and even after adequate rest and food will point to something wrong with your immune response like a cancerous growth in the body.


If one or all of these symptoms exist, you must not delay a visit to the doctor and undergo checkups so that the cancer can be diagnosed in time. Diagnostic methods are normally an ultrasound scan to look for abnormal tissues in the ovaries. There is also a blood test called the CA 125 test which checks the presence of high levels of CA 125 protein that is found in excess in women who have ovarian cancer.

All cancers have a fair chance of getting treated if detected early and hence women must be proactive and keep careful watch on their bodily responses and report abnormal changes to the doctor immediately.