Simple screening test can help detect ovarian cancer - EDU

Simple screening test can help detect ovarian cancer

 Ovarian cancer has for long been known as the silent cancer because women rarely realize they are suffering from it until it too late.

Even in a developed , detection in 70% of the women with the disease is late. Deaths are hence high among ovarian cancer patients.

However, researchers from the Fred Hutchison Cancer Research Centre in Seattle have now worked out a simple screening tool that can be used even in a doctor's clinic to change the scene.

It's a three-question paper-and-pencil survey that can be completed in two minutes. But its answers will help doctors decide if a woman is at risk of ovarian cancer; the woman can be asked to seek the next level of tests (a biomarker blood test such as CA125) to detect the cancer if at all.

Women only need to be asked if they are currently experiencing one or more of the following symptoms:

 If they have abdominal and/or pelvic pain; if they are feeling full quickly and/or unable to eat normally; and if they experience abdominal bloating and/or increased abdomen size.

The frequency and duration of these symptoms also need to be noted, said the researchers.

"Symptoms such as pelvic pain and abdominal bloating may be a sign of ovarian cancer but they also can be caused by other conditions.

This research found that about 60 % of women with early-stage ovarian cancer and 80 % of women with advanced disease reported symptoms. Tthat follow this distinctive pattern at the time of diagnosis.

Women with symptoms that are frequent, continual and new to them in the past year should talk to their doctor, as they may be candidates for further evaluation with ultrasound and blood tests that measure markers of ovarian cancer such as CA-125,"" said the research article published in Open Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

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