Ovarian Cancer Claims Thousands of Lives
Notwithstanding major advances in reproductive healthcare over the past twenty years, ovarian cancer continues to rank as the fifth highest cause of cancer-related deaths among women. The American Cancer Society predicts that in 2018 more than 22,000 cases of ovarian cancer will be diagnosed, and that more than 14,000 women will die due to complications from ovarian cancer.
Here at the Bart Bernard Injury Lawyers in Louisiana, we are committed to supporting the efforts of the physicians and researchers who are striving to cure ovarian cancer, and of the regulators who are working to reduce or eliminate the man-made factors and suspected carcinogens that increase ovarian cancer risks.
Understanding the symptoms, warning signs, risk factors, effects, and treatments for ovarian cancer is the starting point for eradicating this “silent killer.”
What are the Early Warning Signs of Ovarian Cancer?
Ovarian cancer is more easily treated when diagnosed in its early stages. Many of the early symptoms and warning signs of ovarian cancer, however, are similar to symptoms of less virulent health problems.
Because of this, the early warning signs are easily overlooked or ignored. Women are encouraged to visit their physicians promptly if they have any combination of these symptoms over a short period of time:
- Abdominal bloating, pain pressure, or an unusual sense of fullness after eating that feels different than indigestion;
- Frequent urination or an increased urge to urinate;
- Chronic fatigue;
- Back or belly pain;
- Irregular or heavy menstrual cycles;
- Muscular weakness;
- Excessive skin rashes
If there is any doubt over whether these symptoms are just normal reactions to daily stresses, women should trust their instincts and seek medical attention.
Are You at Increased Risk for Ovarian Cancer?
Researchers have identified a number of risk factors that increase a woman’s likelihood of developing ovarian cancer.
- Approximately 25% of all ovarian cancer cases occur in women who are genetically predisposed to developing the disease. Genetic testing may be able to determine whether you have the specific gene mutations that are related to this increased risk.
- Women who have a relative who developed ovarian or certain other types of cancer are also at an elevated risk, even if they do not have a genetic predisposition for it.
- As a woman ages, her risk of developing ovarian cancer increases. Ovarian cancer diagnoses are highest among women between the ages of 55 and 64.
- Regular exposure to certain carcinogenic substances may increase ovarian cancer risks. Scientific studies have demonstrated a causal link between talcum powder and ovarian cancer.
- Certain pharmaceutical treatments, including hormone replacement therapy for five or more years, will increase ovarian cancer risks.
- Lifestyle habits, including smoking and obesity, will also increase a woman’s overall cancer risks.
Diagnosis and Treatment for Advanced Ovarian Cancer
In its later stages, ovarian cancer will lead to a number of common symptoms, including severe pelvic, abdominal, or kidney pain, extreme bloating and constipation, rapid weight loss, and abdominal fluid retention. An oncologist might recommend CT scans, abdominal ultrasound, blood tests, or surgical biopsies to verify an ovarian cancer diagnosis.
Treatments for ovarian cancer may include surgical removal of cancerous tissue, chemotherapy and radiation, and other targeted therapies. A limited number of physicians are trying a handful of experimental therapies as well.
Ovarian cancer is a general term for a number of different types of cancer than can affect a woman’s ovaries and reproductive system. A treatment plan will be a function of the specific type and stage of cancer that has been diagnosed.
Consult with an Experienced Louisiana Personal Injury Lawyer
If you have been diagnosed with ovarian cancer but have none of the genetic or other risk factors for the disease, exposure to carcinogenic substances may be a factor. Recent studies and litigation have pointed to a potential link between talc and ovarian cancer, particularly among women who have used the powder for personal hygiene over long periods of time.
Attorney Bart Bernard has extensive experience in dangerous drug litigation and can help eligible women file a talcum powder lawsuit in search of monetary compensation. Reach out to our Lafayette or Baton Rouge offices today to arrange a complimentary consultation.
Additional Ovarian Cancer Resources:
- Cancer.org Key Statistics for Ovarian Cancer. https://www.cancer.org/cancer/ovarian-cancer/about/key-statistics.html
- Healthline, Ovarian Cancer: Early Symptoms, Detection, and Treatment. https://www.healthline.com/health/cancer/ovarian-cancer-early-signs#symptoms
- OCRFA.org, Risk Factors. https://ocrfa.org/patients/about-ovarian-cancer/risk-factors/
- Medicine.net, Ovarian Cancer: Cancer of the Ovaries. https://www.medicinenet.com/ovarian_cancer/article.htm#stromal_ovarian_cancers