Mumbai: New Study Reveals Key Symptoms And Risk Factors For Ovarian Cancer In Indian Women; Check Details Here

Mumbai: New Study Reveals Key Symptoms And Risk Factors For Ovarian Cancer In Indian Women; Check Details Here

A senior gynaecologist from the civic-run hospital said that the non-specific nature of its symptomatology increases the likelihood of overlooking the diagnosis in the early treatable stages.

Swapnil MishraUpdated: Friday, April 19, 2024, 12:51 AM IST
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Nearly 16 per cent women who were part of the retrospective observational study were identified bloating and abdominal distension , as per the findings which has been accepted for publication in the ‘International Journal of Reproduction, Contraception, Obstetrics and Gynecology’, an indexed medical journal.

However generic abdominal pain which is usually ignored by women thinking pain is caused due to acidity or something else which is actually symptoms of ovarian cancer. 

Dr Tushar Palve, medical superintendent of state-run Cama hospital and one of the lead gynaecologists of study said that every fifth patient in the study identified stomach ache as their initial symptoms, while every tenth patient mentioned stomach pain along with fatigue and weight loss as the main symptoms. 

“This is the first research paper from a long-running study we have undertaken to identify the etiology and symptoms of ovarian cancer among Indian women. Moreover aim of our study was to analyse the symptomatology of diagnosed cases of carcinoma ovary with its known aetiology to elicit significant associations that may aid in diagnostic cues for this elusive disease,” he said. 

Study Objectives And Methodology Explained By Expert

Dr Tushar further explained objective behind conducting this study to establish relation between various risk factors and etiologies. The methodology of study was designed retrospectively which was carried out at Cama and Albless Hospital in Mumbai from January 2023 to January 2024, after getting clearance from Institutional Review Board.

“The sample size of study was 36 women and all were indoor confirmed cases of  carcinoma ovary, post debulking surgery with or without  chemoradiation, willing to give informed consent for participation. However the data was collected from hospital records and interviewing known cases of ovarian cancer, age at presentation, age at first child birth, parity, BMI, family history, chief complaint at presentation was analysAed,” he added. 

Key Findings And Risk Factors In Ovarian Carcinoma

The study also found 13% of cases to have a family history of  ovarian carcinoma. While the majority of ovarian cancer cases are sporadic, approximately upto 10% can be attributed to the inheritance of an ovarian cancer susceptibility gene. It further revealed that women who had delayed motherhood, had less than two children and were overweight had a positive association with ovarian cancer. Around 3 per cent of all cancer cases in India are ovarian.

“As part of the study, we take history of ovarian cancer patients right from their childhood, tryin capture information about viral infections, vaccination, birth control pills, gap between children, among others,” said Dr Tushar.

A senior gynaecologist from the civic-run hospital said that the non-specific nature of its symptomatology increases the likelihood of overlooking the diagnosis in the early treatable stages. However its recognition occurs in the advanced stages, typically at stage III or stage IV.

“Ovarian cancer is linked to several risk factors, predominantly affecting postmenopausal women. The incidence of the disease rises with age, leading to advanced stages and reduced survival rates,” he said. 

Study Findings And Recommendations For Ovarian Cancer Screening

In the current study, the most prevalent symptom was abdominal pain, observed in 17 patients (54%) and the second most common symptom following abdominal pain was abdominal distension by mass, noted by 10 patients (32.2%). Fatigue, bloating and weight loss was seen in 31% cases (n= 5). Only one of the patient (3.2%) had presented with the complaint of urinary retention.

According to gynaecologists several efforts to implement screening measures, multiple screening trials did not demonstrate a reduction in mortality rates for ovarian cancer. ‎Our study suggests at the possibility of a positive family history of ovarian carcinoma marking the patient prone to later child birth, or even infertility. Based on our findings and the studies documenting this association, we recommend that those females in reproductive age having infertility, or later age of first child birth to be periodically screened for carcinoma ovary by transabdominal ultrasonography and assay of blood tumour markers,” concluded Dr Tushar. 

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