Today Team Jags takes a moment to observe World Ovarian Cancer Day. Most recently news about Angelina Jolie brought much needed attention to the importance of ovarian awareness when she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed. Early detection is the key to fighting ovarian cancer. Here are a few important things you need to know about ovarian cancer.
1. Any woman can get ovarian cancer
Though relatively rare, ovarian cancer is diagnosed in more than 250,000 women worldwide every year. And unlike other cancers, it affects women in developed and developing countries similarly. Also, while the diagnosis rate is higher in some age and ethnic groups, the cancer affects women across the spectrum. Basically, any woman who is capable of giving birth (as in, her ovaries are intact and working) is at risk.
2. Caucasian women have a statistically higher rate
Even though the disease can affect any woman, Caucasian women develop ovarian cancer at a higher rate than women of color in the United States. By extension, the mortality rate in Caucasian women is also higher.
3. Ovarian cancer can be hard to detect
Because most of the early symptoms of ovarian cancer are also linked with common problems, the disease isn’t always detected early on. Common symptoms include bloating (common during PMS), pelvic pain or discomfort and frequent urination (common with a urinary tract infection), and persistent lack of energy (common with being an busy adult). However, these symptoms will last longer and increase over time, which might be a tip off that something else is wrong.