March is Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

Thursday 1st March, 2018

Logo - ovarian cancer awareness month

Ovarian cancer can be devastating. Far too many women are diagnosed too late, once the cancer has already spread, making treatment more difficult.

Ovarian cancer is the fourth most common form of cancer death in women, after breast, lung and bowel cancer. 

Over 7,000 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer each year in the UK.

Ovarian cancer mainly affects women who have been through the menopause (usually over the age of 50), but it can sometimes affect younger women. Recent research shows an alarmingly low awareness of the symptoms among woman. 

Common symptoms of ovarian cancer can be:

  • feeling constantly bloated
  • a swollen tummy
  • discomfort in your tummy or pelvic area
  • feeling full quickly when eating
  • needing to pee more often than normal

The symptoms aren't always easy to recognise because they're similar to more common conditions. 

If you have been feeling bloated most days for the last three weeks, have a family history of ovarian cancer and are worried you may be at a higher risk of getting it or you have other symptoms from the list above that won't go away – make an appointment to see your GP.  

It's unlikely you have cancer, but it's best to check.  Your GP can do some simple tests to see if you might have it.

Find out more on the Ovarian Cancer pages of the NHS Choices website