Font Size
A
A
A

Ovarian Cancer (cont.)

Ovarian Cancer Symptoms

Ovarian cancer is difficult to diagnose because symptoms often do not occur until late in the disease. Symptoms do not occur until the tumor has grown large enough to apply pressure to other organs in the abdomen, or until the cancer has spread to remote organs. The symptoms are nonspecific, meaning they could be due to many different conditions. Cancer is not usually the first thing considered in a woman having symptoms.

The only early symptom of the disease is menstrual irregularity. Symptoms that come later include the following:

  • Pelvic pain or pressure
  • Pain with intercourse
  • Abdominal swelling and bloating
  • Urinary frequency
  • Constipation
  • Ascites - Collection of fluid in the abdomen, contributing to abdominal distension and shortness of breath
  • Loss of appetite
  • Feeling full after eating little
  • Gas and/or diarrhea
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Abnormalities in menstruation, pubertal development, and abnormal hair growth (with tumors that secrete hormones)
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/9/2014
Medical Author:
Coauthor:
Coauthor:
Medical Editor:
Medical Editor:

Must Read Articles Related to Ovarian Cancer

Cancer Symptoms
Cancer Symptoms Most symptoms and signs of cancer may also be explained by harmless conditions, so it's important to limit one's risk factors and undergo appropriate cancer scr...learn more >>
Cancer: What You Need to Know
Cancer: What You Need to Know The news comes like a sledgehammer into the stomach: "I'm sorry to tell you, but you have cancer." Every year, a million Americans are devastated by news of can...learn more >>
Ovarian Cysts
Ovarian Cysts There are several different types of ovarian cysts (noncancerous growths). Follicular, corpus luteum, hemorrhagic, dermoid, endometrioid (endometriomas), polycy...learn more >>

Patient Comments & Reviews

The eMedicineHealth doctors ask about Ovarian Cancer:

Ovarian Cancer - Diagnosis

How was your ovarian cancer diagnosed?

Ovarian Cancer - Experience

Please describe your experience with ovarian cancer.

Ovarian Cancer - Symptoms

For ovarian cancer, what were the symptoms and signs you experienced?




Read What Your Physician is Reading on Medscape

Ovarian Cancer »

Ovarian cancer is the most common cause of cancer death from gynecologic tumors in the United States.

Read More on Medscape Reference »


Medical Dictionary