Ovarian cancer has always been thought of as a symptomless disease but research has shown this to be untrue. There ARE symptoms, unfortunately they may be so subtle that they are attributed to other benign conditions.
The Ovarian Cancer National Alliance conducted a survey in which 89% of women were unaware of ovarian cancer symptoms before being diagnosed. However, 81% of the respondents realize in hindsight that symptoms existed before diagnosis, with these symptoms being confused with irritable bowel syndrome, pre-menopause, stress, acid reflux, endometriosis, gall bladder issues or other ailments.
Correct diagnoses occur only slightly more often than incorrect diagnoses. Only 59% of women are correctly diagnosed, but at least 41% of women are treated for other conditions before being diagnosed with ovarian cancer.
These are scary statistics considering the advances made in early detection and pre-screening tools used to detect other forms of cancer.
There is NO screening test for ovarian cancer so symptom education is critical for early detection.