The 7 Biggest Ovarian Cancer Myths
Ovarian cancer is a debilitating condition that affects women from all walks of life. Those who suffer from the disease have to go through painstaking treatments and deal with loads of psychological issues related to the disease. One particular challenge that patients often face is being bombarded with information regarding possible treatments and cures, many of which are blatantly false. Today, we’re going to take some time to go through these myths so that patients don’t have to worry about misleading information. Below are the top 7 myths about ovarian cancer you should know about.
Ovarian cancer is known to affect women of all walks of life, irrespective of age or race. Those who go through this condition and carry out treatment for it can endure pain and have to deal with a lot of psychological issues. But there are certain incorrect beliefs about ovarian cancer that can misguide an individual and instill fear in their minds unnecessarily. Here are a few myths about ovarian cancer that we all should be aware of:
- Death sentence: Ovarian cancer has been called a silent killer, but the deadliness of this medical condition mostly depends upon a number of factors, one of the most significant being the stage at which the disease is diagnosed in the individual. If the individual is at the first or second stage, then the survival rates are a bit higher, at 80 to 90 percent. But if they are diagnosed at stage three or four, then the chances are less. However, it should not be considered a death sentence. There is a 40 to 60 percent chance of survival for up to five years. In the case of later stages, it is often deadlier and the chances of survival are less. Due to newer technologies, though, there have been new treatment options introduced which are helping to increase the survival rates among cancer victims.
- Comes without warning: In terms of cancer, warning signs are very important. The earlier they are caught, the better it is in terms of getting it treated and increasing one’s survival rate. In the case of ovarian cancer, however, the warnings are subtle and can be easily confused with some other disease, which is why this condition can often be misdiagnosed.
- STDs lead to ovarian cancer: This is not true. STDs can lead to infection in the ovaries and the fallopian tubes, with symptoms that can, again, be confused with those of ovarian cancer. These STD-related infections are not deadly, however, they can cause infertility in women if not treated in time.
- No screenings: There is a misconception that there are no screenings available to identify ovarian cancer. Doctors are actually known to use CA-125 to test for the presence of a certain type of protein which is often found in ovarian cancer. But it should be noted that this test is not always reliable, and so there are other tests, such as OVA1, to more accurately detect the cancer.
- Birth control pills increase the risk: This is completely untrue. In fact, it has been observed that regular intake of birth control pills can reduce the chances of getting ovarian cancer. However, researchers have not been able to confirm this as of yet.
- Removing the ovaries prevents cancer: This is a common misconception since ovarian cancer can originate from either the ovaries or the fallopian tubes, so removal of the ovaries would not reduce the risk. While both the ovaries and tubes can be removed, they come with their own risks.
- Ovarian cysts turn into cancer: These cysts are known to occur when a follicle begins to grow, but there is no production of eggs. Doctors usually keep an eye on them, but they should go away in a month or two.