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What Is Ovarian Cancer?

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Prashant K Vaidya 90% (18372 ratings)
Diploma In Gastroenterology, Diploma In Dermatology, BHMS
Homeopathy Doctor, Hyderabad  •  11 years experience
What Is Ovarian Cancer?

The ovaries are mainly made up of 3 kinds of cells.... Most ovarian tumors are epithelial cell tumors. Germ cell tumors start from the cells that produce the eggs (ova). Stromal tumors start from structural tissue cells that hold the ovary together and produce the female hormones estrogen and progesterone.

Types:

The ovaries are made up of three types of cells. Each cell can develop into a different type of tumor:

-Epithelial tumors form in the layer of tissue on the outside of the ovaries. About 90 percent of ovarian cancers are epithelial tumors
-Stromal tumors grow in the hormone-producing cells. Seven percent of ovarian cancers are stromal tumors.
-Germ cell tumors develop in the egg-producing cells. Germ cell tumors are rare.

Causes:

Ovarian cancer happens when cells divide and multiply in an unregulated way. However, exactly why this happens is not clear.

The following risk factors are linked to a higher chance of developing the disease:

*Family history:
Women with close relatives who have had ovarian or breast cancer have a higher risk of developing ovarian cancer, compared with other women. Genetic screening can determine whether somebody carries certain genes that are associated with an increased risk.

*Age:
Most cases of ovarian cancer occur after menopause, and especially in women aged over 63 years. It is rare before the age of 40 years.

*Reproductive history:
Women who have had one or more full-term pregnancies, especially before the age of 26 years, have a lower risk. The more pregnancies they have, the lower the risk.

*Breastfeeding may also decrease the risk.

-Birth control:
Using the contraceptive pill for at least 3 to 6 months appears to reduce the risk. The longer the pill is used, the lower the risk appears to be. Using an injectible contraceptive hormone, depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA or Depo-Provera CI), especially for 3 years or more, reduces the risk further.

-Infertility or fertility treatment:
Fertility drugs have been linked to a higher risk of ovarian cancer, especially in women who used them for more than one year without becoming pregnant. Those who are infertile may also have a higher risk than those who are not, possible due to not carrying a pregnancy.

-Breast cancer:
Women who have received a diagnosis of breast cancer have a higher chance of being diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

For this reason, women who are diagnosed with breast cancer and who test positive for the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene may opt to have an oophorectomy as preventive therapy.

Symptoms:

It’s easy to overlook the early symptoms of ovarian cancer because they’re similar to other common illnesses or they tend to come and go. The early symptoms include:

-abdominal bloating, pressure, and pain
-abnormal fullness after eating
-difficulty eating
-an increase in urination
-an increased urge to urinate

*Ovarian cancer can also cause other symptoms, such as:

-fatigue
-indigestion
-heartburn
-constipation
-back pain
-menstrual irregularities
-painful intercourse
-dermatomyositis (a rare inflammatory disease that can cause skin rash, muscle weakness, and inflamed muscles)

These symptoms may occur for any number of reasons. They aren’t necessarily due to ovarian cancer. Many women have some of these problems at one time or another. These types of symptoms are often temporary and respond to simple treatments in most cases.

Again, cancers are best treated when detected early. Please consult with your doctor if you experience new and unusual symptoms.

The symptoms will persist if they’re due to ovarian cancer. Symptoms usually become more severe as the tumor grows. By this time, the cancer has usually spread outside of the ovaries, making it much harder to treat effectively.

Diagnosis:

A doctor will carry out a pelvic examination and check for any palpable abnormalities in the uterus or ovaries. They will also check the patient's medical history and family history.

The following tests are used to help diagnose ovarian cancer:

-Blood tests: Checking for elevated levels of a marker called CA-125.

-Imaging tests: Transvaginal ultrasound, MRI, or a CT scan might be used.

-Laparoscopy: A laparoscope, a thin viewing tube with a camera at the end, is inserted through a small incision in the lower abdomen. This will allow the doctor to see the ovaries and, if necessary, to take a tissue sample

-Colonoscopy: If there is constipation or bleeding from the rectum, a colonoscopy may be needed, to examine the large intestine, or colon.

-Abdominal fluid aspiration: If the patient's abdomen is swollen, there may be a buildup of fluid, which can be examined by using a fine needle to remove some fluid through the abdomen.

-Biopsy: The usual way to diagnose ovarian cancer is to remove the tumor or part of the tumor to examine for the presence of cancer cells.

Role of Homeopathy In Ovarian:

Treatment of ovarian cancer has to be multi-way therapy. Its not either Homeopathy or conventional treatment. The best long-term results are achieved by combination therapy depending on age, stage of ovarian cancer and general health condition of patient. While conventional treatments like chemotherapy or radiation therapy helps in faster removal of cancer, Homeopathy Treatment for ovarian cancer can help in:

-Regression of ovarian cancer
-Prevention of recurrence of ovarian cancer,
-Removing side-effects of chemo and radiation therapy,
-Relieving cancer pains
-Improving general quality of life and hence, a better reaction to other treatments.

The speciality Homeopathic treatment for ovarian cancer, developed at Welling Clinics can be very helpful for those suffering from ovarian cancer.

Diet and non-diet:

There is no proven evidence regarding the cause of PCOD though gynaecologists are of the opinion that some females possess a predisposition to this disease, and it may run hereditarily in the family. You can alleviate your PCOD symptoms to a considerable extent by regulating your diet properly.

Have loads of fruits and green leafy vegetables and try to abstain from dairy products as many experts believe that dairy products are a direct cause of an increase in insulin levels, which can aggravate skin troubles along with other PCOD symptoms. Avoiding red meat and eating lean meat instead will help the condition and reduce the chances of infertility. It is always recommended to avoid hydrogenated and saturated fats, which are normally found in animal and dairy-based food. Try to put a stop to cheese, cottage cheese, clarified butter, pork, lamb, beef, etc. and certain baked products like cookies, cakes and fudges as they will trigger a rise in your blood sugar and cholesterol levels.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
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