Today, four women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer. It’s a devastating experience, because:
- The symptoms of ovarian cancer are so vague. For many women, the only signs are cramps, bloating, feeling full or needing to urinate more often—all symptoms which mimic common female complaints;
- Approximately 70% of women diagnosed will discover that their ovarian cancer is in the advanced stages, and only 25% of these women will survive beyond five years;
- Many women will have entered hospital to undergo exploratory surgery, but most will wake to find they have undergone a complete hysterectomy;
- This invasive surgery is currently the only way of detecting and accurately diagnosing ovarian cancer;
- Instead of then being allowed to simply rest and recover from major surgery, they then undergo intense chemotherapy, without a clear understanding of whether this approach is suitable or effective for their specific cancer strain.
Many women discover that even if their treatment succeeds in getting rid of their cancer, there’s a 90% chance that it will come back within 18 months, at which point it will likely be terminal.
It is a bleak and depressing picture of the reality of ovarian cancer—a picture that hasn’t shifted in thirty years but needs to change urgently.
These statistics scratch the surface of why innovative research is so urgently needed—to find an early detection test and also discover better, more effective treatments that will help women survive their diagnosis long term.