Ovarian Cancer And Its Types
27 July 2021
Ovaries are defined as almond-sized organs present on both sides of the uterus. It is responsible for storing eggs and making hormones in the female body. Ovarian cancer has the highest mortality rate and is one of the most common gynecologic cancers. The exact cause of ovarian cancer is still unknown. However, it is assumed that it can be passed down genetically or as a result of lifestyle choices.
Types of Ovarian Cancer
It is the most common type to be diagnosed with ovarian cancer. It takes place on the surface of the ovaries (the epithelium) of the fallopian tube. Fallopian tube cancer or Peritoneal cancer also comes under this type.
2. Germ Cell
This type of cancer develops in egg-producing cells. It is a rare type of ovarian cancer. Females between 10 to 29 years of age are when it typically occurs.
3. Stromal cell
It developed in the connective tissue cells called granulosa and theca cells, which hold the ovaries together. Over 90% of these stromal tumors are called granulosa cell tumors, either adult or childhood types. Granulosa cell tumors may secrete estrogen, resulting in unusual vaginal bleeding at the time of diagnosis. Other types are Sertoli-Leydig cell tumors and steroid cell tumors.
4. Small cell carcinoma
Small cell carcinoma is an extremely rare ovarian cancer. Cancer comes from epithelial, germ cells, or stromal cells yet hasn’t been derived.
Stages of ovarian cancer
Stage 1: cancer is limited to either one or both ovaries.
Stage 2: cancer is spread to one or both ovaries as well as some else in the pelvis
Stage 3: In this stage, cancer has spread through the pelvis and reached some parts of the abdomen
Stage 4: Growth of cancer involves one or both ovaries and distant metastases (spread of cancer to organs located outside of the peritoneal cavity) have occurred. Finding ovarian cancer cells in pleural fluid (from the cavity which surrounds the lungs) is also evidence of stage IV disease.
Symptoms and signs
It is difficult to detect or find signs of ovarian cancer. Until it reaches some advanced stages, cancer detection is fairly difficult. Only 20% of ovarian cancer is detected at an early stage. This is possible because the symptoms aren’t noticeable in the early stage or it seems similar to digestive distress or minor stomach ache.
The most common signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer are:
Pelvic or abdominal pain
Early satiety (feeling full quickly) or difficulty eating
A need to urinate frequently or urgently
Less common ovarian cancer symptoms include:
Pain during sex
Constipation or upset stomach
Unusual belly swelling