If you are wondering what causes ovarian cancer, then unfortunately science has not been able to identify precise reason for this type of cancer. Women are at an increased risk to suffer from this type of cancer in the later stage of life.
Understanding causes and risk factors
Our body consists of millions of cells that have their own life cycle. Their growth and multiplication is controlled. Cancer is the result of un-controlled cell multiplication.
Ovarian cancer means excess growth of ovarian cells. This process can extend to other organs including entire reproductive system and even lungs, especially in the advanced stages.
Presence of cancer of breasts or ovaries in close relation may increase the possibility of ovarian cancer. Genetic factors that have been linked to breast cancer are also associated with cancer of ovaries.
Approximately ten per cent cases of ovarian cancers are found to be linked to faulty genes. BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes are being studied extensively in this regard. Women who have a family history of breast and ovarian cancer are at an increased risk.
If one studies the pattern of ovarian cancer, then it is easy to understand why age is considered to be one of the risk factors. More than eight per cent ovarian cancers are diagnosed after the age of fifty.
Factors affecting ovarian damage
Epithelial ovarian carcinoma is the commonest forms of ovarian cancer. It is characterized by presence of malignant tumors. These tumors result from epithelial or surface tissues of the ovaries.
Function of ovaries is to release the egg and this process damages ovarian surface. We all know that this process of damage and repair goes on continuously from menarche to menopause.
Epithelial damage of ovaries is followed by repair process that includes cellular multiplication. This is one of the many possible causes of cancer of ovaries.
Now you will know why oral contraceptive measures are found to reduce risk of developing ovarian cancer. Ovaries cease to produce and release eggs during oral contraceptive treatment, periods of pregnancy, and lactation.
Obviously, over production of eggs during assisted reproduction treatment may increase the risk of ovarian cancer. However this is not a major risk factor according to some of the studies.
Minimizing ovarian cancer risk factors
One can ensure reduced risk of cancer of the ovaries following multiple pregnancies. It is also established that women who breastfeed their children for prolonged periods are at a reduced risk of ovarian cancer.
Contraceptive pill has a beneficial effect of minimizing the possibility of cancer. It is observed that women who consume oral contraceptive or birth control pills for the minimum period of five years are less likely to suffer from cancer of the cervix or ovaries.
Prevention of ovulation as a result of contraceptive measures, pregnancies, and lactation is a major risk reducing factor of cancer in women. Tubal ligation procedure and hysterectomy offer similar benefits.
It is not very clear as to what causes ovarian cancer although there is a real story which can guide you to fight with ovarian cancer . However early detection certainly improves prognosis. Elderly women, who experience digestive disturbances, bloating, or fullness of stomach and have a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, should consult doctor for further investigations.