Advanced Ovarian Cancer & Its Optimal Management

Ovarian cancer amounts to about 3.4% of all cancers in women worldwide. It is one of the most lethal forms of cancer affecting women. More than 75% of the women diagnosed with ovarian cancer are detected only during the advanced stage. This is because the early stage of ovarian cancer does not show any symptoms.

What is Ovarian Cancer?

Ovarian cancer is the growth of abnormal cells in the ovaries. These cells multiply quickly and destroy healthy tissue in your ovaries. 

You can receive Ovarian Cancer Treatment in Hebbal, Bangalore at Manipal Hospital equipped with top-class technologies and equipment and have one of the best Oncologist in Hebbal who have extensive experience in diagnosing & treating common to rare gynecological conditions.

Symptoms of Ovarian Cancer

As mentioned above, the initial stages of ovarian cancer do not present with symptoms. But as the disease progresses, you may experience the following symptoms.

  • Abdominal pain

  • Abdominal swelling or bloating

  • Feeling full after eating very little

  • Weight loss

  • Discomfort in the pelvic region

  • Backache

  • Fatigue

  • Changes in bowel movements like constipation

  • Frequent urge to pee

Stages of Ovarian Cancer

Once you are diagnosed with ovarian cancer, the next step is to identify the stage of cancer. This helps determine how far along cancer has advanced. Ovarian cancer can be divided into four stages - Stage 1, Stage 2, Stage 3, and Stage 4. 

The stage of ovarian cancer is decided based on the following criteria:

  • The size of the tumour

  • The degree of spread of the tumour

  • The location of the spread of the tumour

Advanced Stage of Ovarian Cancer

The advanced stage of ovarian cancer is usually stages 4 ovarian cancer. In this stage, cancer has spread beyond the ovaries and pelvis into the other organs. The organs that are involved are:

  • Lungs

  • Liver

  • Brain

  • Skin

Advanced ovarian cancer is further divided into substages: 4A and 4B. 

Stage 4A Ovarian Cancer

The cancer cells are found in the fluid around the lungs in this stage of cancer. The fluid collection around the lungs is known as pleural effusion. In this stage, cancer has not spread to the other parts of the body. It has not drifted out of the pelvis and the peritoneal cavity. The peritoneum is the membrane that lines the inner cavity of the abdomen. 

Stage 4B Ovarian Cancer

In this stage, cancer has spread to most areas outside the pelvis like the brain, skin, lungs, and nearby lymph nodes. 

Management of Advanced Ovarian Cancer

Once the stage of your disease has been identified, it is imperative for the doctor to decide on your treatment protocol. The following treatment plan is usually abided to, for ovarian cancer:

  1. Surgery

Surgical excision of cancerous growth is the primary treatment for ovarian cancer. But it is not a treatment that every single patient with ovarian cancer needs. Removing the tumour also means removing your ovary or a part of it. This helps slow or stop the progression of cancer. In some women, both the ovaries are removed along with their fallopian tubes and uterus.

  1. Chemotherapy

Chemotherapy is a medical treatment for cancer. The specific medicine enters the bloodstream and identifies cancer cells, thereby destroying them. As effective as this treatment may be, it also damages the healthy cells of the body.

  1. Radiation therapy

This therapy uses X-rays and high-energy particles to find and destroy cancer cells. 

  1. Hormone therapy

Hormone therapy allows to reduce or block hormone production. Some hormones are known to help some of the tumours to grow. Hence with reduced hormone levels, cancer stops spreading or growing quickly.

  1. Targeted therapy

This is a newer form of treatment that focuses on reducing the damage to healthy cells. As the name suggests, it targets only the cancerous cells and destroys them. Targeted therapy is not the same as chemotherapy since the former look for cancerous cells and destroys them. This way you can slow down your cancer progression.

If you are suffering from any of the above symptoms or if you have advanced ovarian cancer, consult your physician right away. Don’t delay, visit the best cancer care hospital in Hebbal, understand the best possible treatment modality for yourself and get the deed done. Optimal management for ovarian cancer varies from person to person, depending on the spread of the disease, stage of cancer, and symptoms experienced. Relax and focus on getting better, leave the rest to your doctor.

 

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