Ovarian Cancer

Ovarian epithelial cancer begins in the tissue that covers the ovaries, which are the reproductive glands that produce eggs (ova). While there are different types of ovarian cancer, such as germ cell and stromal tumors, ovarian epithelial cancer is the most common, accounting for about 90% of ovarian cancer patients. This cancer typically occurs in women who are past menopause (approximately age 50 and up), with about half of the women who are diagnosed at age 63 or older. More Caucasian women are affected than African-American women.

Arizona Oncology offers an integrated team-oriented approach to provide you with the best possible care. Our ovarian cancer doctors are eager to explain the facts and answer your questions at every step along the way. Our team of dedicated, highly-trained physicians and staff are committed to providing the highest quality compassionate ovarian cancer care to our patients. We will help you, and your family, make individualized treatment decisions in partnership with our medical team. During this process, you will gain the knowledge and confidence to help manage your cancer and continue with routine activities of daily life.

Signs & Symptoms of Ovarian Cancer

Patients often present nonspecific pelvic or abdominal symptoms, such as bloating, frequent urination, irregular periods or unexpected vaginal bleeding (after menopause), indigestion, fatigue, and pain in the back, abdomen, or pelvis. Because symptoms are similar to those of other common illnesses and/or some female reproductive conditions, ovarian cancer can be difficult to diagnose at an early stage.


Ovarian Cancer Risk Factors and Prevention

There is no way to completely prevent ovarian cancer. Ovarian cancer is caused by some factors that you can control – like obesity and smoking, but also other factors that you cannot. Find out what you can do to avoid ovarian cancer from developing.


Ovarian Cancer Diagnosis

There is not a standard test to screen for ovarian cancer, so it’s important to watch out for symptoms and report them to your doctor. In some cases, ovarian cancer can be difficult to diagnose because symptoms may not be noticeable until the cancer has progressed. If you find you’re noticing signs or symptoms of ovarian cancer, your doctor may run some diagnostic tests including:

  • Pelvic Exam
  • Blood Tests
  • Ultrasound


Ovarian Cancer Staging

If you’ve been diagnosed with ovarian cancer, your gynecologic oncologist will determine the stage of your cancer to help decide on a treatment plan. Ovarian cancer stages range from Stages I – IV, based on whether the cancer has spread to other parts of the body. The doctor may order tests to determine whether the cancer has spread, including:

  • CT scan
  • Chest x-ray
  • Colonoscopy


Treatment Options for Ovarian Cancer

Our Arizona gynecologic oncologists will develop a cancer treatment plan that’s best for you based on your type and stage of ovarian cancer and your general overall health. Your treatment plan may include a combination of surgery, chemotherapy, and targeted therapy.


Ovarian Cancer Clinical Research

New treatments for ovarian cancer are currently under investigation and available to patients in and around Phoenix, Sedona, Tucson and Scottsdale, Arizona. Arizona Oncology is a part of the US Oncology Network’s Research Program offering more than 70 active cancer research trials at any given time. Find an ovarian cancer clinical trial that may be right for you.


Genetic Testing for Ovarian Cancer

Those who want to know whether their ovarian cancer was caused by a known genetic mutation that causes hereditary ovarian syndrome can set up genetic risk assessment and testing at one of our locations throughout Arizona. Our Hereditary Risk Assessment team can help you learn more about the genetic testing process and whether it’s right for you or members of your family.


Support & Resources for Ovarian Cancer Patients

Gynecologic cancer survivorship resources, including support groups, are available to ovarian cancer patients and family members throughout Arizona, including Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Glendale. We encourage you to take advantage of these resources including the Ovarian Cancer Alliance of Arizona.


Visit the National Cancer Institute where this information and more can be found about Ovarian Cancer including side effects of treatments, support information, and more. 

Lo que usted necesita saber sobre el cáncer de ovarios.