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Women of all ages, around the world are diagnosed with ovarian cancer each year. Known as the silent killer, it’s difficult to diagnose and causes up to 140,000 deaths each year. But despite all this, it is still a condition that not many women know a great deal about. When it comes to your health, knowledge is power. The more you learn about ovarian cancer, the more aware you will be to changes to your body. This could mean that you get an early diagnosis which could effectively save your life. So to increase your knowledge, here are three things all women should know about ovarian cancer.
Late-Stage Diagnosis is Common
Unlike cancers such as breast cancer, it’s much more difficult to spot the symptoms of ovarian cancer early. Another issue is the symptoms it does produce are vague and related to hundreds of other conditions. Persistent bloating can be linked with food allergies or overeating. Abdominal and pelvic pain is something many women experience during their time of the month. While these symptoms could be caused by many things, they can also be a sign of ovarian cancer. Many women will only see their doctor once these symptoms worsen, which is why late diagnosis is so common. So even if you think your symptoms are minor, it’s always best to see your doctor immediately.
A Smear Test Doesn’t Detect Ovarian Cancer
Many women are under the misconception that having clear results from a smear test means they don’t have ovarian cancer. But unfortunately, this is not the case. Smear tests are used to spot cervical cancer, which is a lot easier to treat in comparison. So even though you’ve had a smear test, that doesn’t mean you are necessarily free from risk. Blood samples, internal exams, and ultrasounds are common methods used to detect ovarian cancer. Generally, these tests will only be carried out after you have experienced ovarian cancer symptoms. Even though it doesn’t detect ovarian cancer, it’s still worthwhile to have a smear test. If you’ve never had a smear test before and are of the recommended age, arrange one with your doctor.
It’s Linked with the Use of Talcum Powder
Studies have found that women who use talcum powder regularly have an increased chance of developing ovarian cancer. It’s been found to cause inflammation and encourage cancerous cells to grow if it reaches your ovaries. This may come as a surprise because talc is a popular feminine hygiene product used by thousands of women. As the majority of these women are unaware of this risk, they continue applying talc to their intimate area. So to significantly reduce your risk, it can be worthwhile to discontinue using talcum powder products. To find more info about talcum powder and ovarian cancer, talk to your doctor or read medical journals online.
While learning more about ovarian cancer is beneficial, it’s also important to know more about the symptoms it can produce. Look online for ovarian cancer symptom guides and see your doctor immediately if you think you have any of them. The earlier it is caught, the easier it is to treat.