JOPLIN, Mo. — Tens of thousands of women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer this year. But catching it early – crucial for the patient’s health – can be difficult.
Dr. Chance Matthiesen, Radiation/Oncology: “We don’t really have a good screening system. Tumors that happen in the colon and rectum that give us a sign like blood in the stool or abdominal cramping or, for lung cancer, there’s often coughing up blood or recurring pneumonias, there really is no consistent symptom.”
It could be losing your appetite or a vague abdominal pain. So Freeman Dr. Chance Matthiesen says it’s important to notice any changes to your health.
“Early detection is true and early staging is also universal associated improved prognosis. What is unique about ovarian cancer is that there are so many different subtypes.”
Meaning the size of the cancer and the patient’s prognosis can vary widely. So, make sure you schedule regular visits to your OB/GYN.
“Part of routine OB/GYN is pelvic exams where the OB/GYN attempts to palpate and feel the internal gynecological organs – often that is the best way, on an examination that a physician can possibly detect if there’s a problem.”