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What you should know about ovarian cancer’s vague symptoms

If you have a family history of ovarian or breast cancer, you should speak to your health-care provider as soon as possible to get genetic testing started, experts say. Photo: Pexels

(Stephanie Dubois/ CBC News) — Ovarian cancer is considered to be the most serious of women’s cancers. Experts say that’s because symptoms are generic, there isn’t a specific test for it — like mammograms for breast cancer — and when detected, the cancer is usually in a later stage. 

“It’s definitely something I don’t think that a lot of women really necessarily know about,” Paige Gibbings, a registered nurse and the clinical co-ordinator for the ovarian tumours surgical program at Toronto’s Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, told CBC’s The Dose host Dr. Brian Goldman. 

That’s why it’s important for those with female reproductive organs to know the risks, experts say. 

Roughly 3,000 women were expected to be diagnosed with ovarian cancer last year. An estimated 1,950 will die from it, according to the Canadian Cancer Society. 

Those who have a genetic mutation or family history are at higher risk of ovarian cancer. (…)