2.1 Signs and symptoms

2.1 Signs and symptoms

Ovarian cancer symptoms are vague and non-specific, but persistent symptoms should be investigated, particularly in older patients or those with family history. The following symptoms should be investigated:

  • abdominal bloating
  • increased abdominal girth
  • abdominal and/or pelvic pain
  • indigestion
  • lack of appetite
  • feeling full after only a small amount of food
  • unexplained weight gain or weight loss
  • change in bowel habits
  • fatigue
  • urinary frequency or incontinence
  • pressure in the abdomen.

The presence of multiple signs and symptoms, particularly in combination with other underlying risk factors, indicates an increased risk of ovarian cancer.

Symptoms that persist for more than four weeks should be investigated.

Symptoms persisting for more than one week after initial treatment initiated by the general practitioner should be further investigated within two weeks.