Ovarian cancer affects 20,000 women each year

The female reproductive system has two ovaries, each about the size of a walnut and sitting on either side of the uterus, near the ends of the fallopian tubes. They store egg cells and create hormones like estrogen and progesterone. When the ovarian cells mutate and grow too quickly, they form cancer. These cancer cells can affect how your ovaries work and even spread into other areas of your body.

Ovarian cancer symptoms can look like other conditions, such as endometriosis. Symptoms may include:

  • Abdominal bloating
  • Abnormal vaginal bleeding or discharge
  • Pelvic or abdominal pain or pressure
  • Trouble eating or feeling full quickly
  • Unintended weight loss

If you have any of these symptoms for new or unexplained reasons or they occur frequently, you should see a gynecologist.

Types of Ovarian Cancer

Your ovaries contain different types of cells. Cancer can start in any of these, including:

  • Epithelial cells that cover the surface of the ovary
  • Germ cells that make up the ovum
  • Stromal cells that produce hormones

Cancer that starts in the epithelial cells is the most common, while germ cell and stromal cell tumors are rarer. It’s important to know which type of ovarian cancer you have so you can get the most effective treatment possible.

At Ellis Medicine, we treat all types and stages of ovarian cancer. Thanks to our partnership with Roswell Park, you have access to the latest therapies that give new hope to women fighting ovarian cancer.

Ovarian Cancer Risk Factors

While smoking is a clear risk factor for lung cancer, there aren’t many clear risk factors for ovarian cancer. Some possible risk factors for ovarian cancer include:

  • Being over age 40
  • Having endometriosis
  • Exposure to asbestos
  • Menstruating at an early age or starting menopause at a later age Obesity
  • Family history of ovarian cancer, breast cancer and/or colorectal cancer
  • Never giving birth or giving birth the first time after age 35
  • Personal history of breast cancer before age 45
  • Taking clomiphene citrate (Clomid) for more than a year
  • Taking estrogen or other hormone therapy

Live-Saving Cancer Care, nearby in your community.

transparent placeholder image