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Ovarian cancer can affect one or both of the ovaries.

Ovarian cancer can affect one or both of the ovaries.
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Ovarian cancer

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Ovarian cancer can affect one or both of the ovaries. The ovaries are a pair of small organs in the female reproductive system that contain and release an egg once a month in women of menstruating age. This is known as ovulation.

There are several types of ovarian cancer. They include:

  • epithelial ovarian cancer, which affects the surface layers of the ovary; it is by far the most common type
  • germ cell ovarian cancer, which originate in the cells that make the eggs
  • stromal tumours, which develop within the cells that release female hormones

It is also possible to have borderline epithelial tumours which are not as aggressive as other epithelial tumours. These are sometimes called 'low malignant potential' or LMPO tumours.

Ovarian cancer is most common in women who have experienced menopause (usually over the age of 50), but it can affect women of any age. Cancer of the ovary can spread to other parts of the reproductive system and the surrounding areas, including the womb (uterus), vagina and abdomen.

The symptoms of ovarian cancer can be similar to those of other conditions making them difficult to recognise. However, there are early symptoms to look out for such as pain in the pelvis and lower stomach, persistent bloating and difficulty eating. Consult your doctor if you are experiencing any of these symptoms.

Last reviewed: December 2017

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Ovarian Cancer (Adenocarcinoma of the Ovary) | myVMC

Ovarian cancer affects the ovaries, reproductive organs which produce hormones and eggs. It is the 6th most common cause of cancer-related death in women.

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Ovarian cancer is the growth of abnormal cells in 1 or both ovaries in a womans reproductive system. The earlier the cancer is detected and diagnosed, the better the outcome.

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Ovarian cancer -

There are 4 main types of ovarian cancer. Find out about epithelial, germ cell, sex cord stromal cell and borderline tumours, and who is at risk.

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Ovarian Cancer - Information, Treatment & Support - CanTeen

Ovarian cancer is a condition that affects the female organ responsible for hormone and egg production. Learn more about causes and treatments with CanTeen.

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Ovarian cancer - Lab Tests Online AU

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Types of Ovarian Cancer

Most ovarian cancers start in the epithelial cells, which form the outer layer of tissue around the ovary.

Read more on Cancer Australia website

What is Ovarian cancer?

Ovarian cancer occurs when abnormal cells in the ovary, fallopian tube or peritoneum grow in an uncontrolled way.

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Ovarian Cancer Awareness | Ovarian Cancer

Almost half of women were unable to identify any symptom of ovarian cancer according to Cancer Australia research. What can you do? It's important to know your own body and be aware of the symptoms of the disease, as there is no screening test for ovarian cancer.

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Ovarian cancer - Cancer Pathways

For information about ovarian cancer call Ovarian Cancer Australia on 1300 660 334 or visit

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family history of ovarian cancer

family history of ovarian cancer

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