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Each year, more than 20,000 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

As the fifth most common cancer among women, ovarian cancer is commonly nicknamed the “silent killer” among women over the age of 55.

Though by no means linked uniquely to postmenopausal women, ovarian cancer is highly aggressive, and, according to doctors, incredibly difficult to detect. Mother Erin Barret only happened to discover she had ovarian cancer because she was pregnant.

We are well-versed in the cancer symptoms that absolutely cannot be ignored (as we hope you are, too) — but when looking at gynecological cancers, many of these universal cancer symptoms may sound quite general and vague.

Nevertheless, we’ll learn more about the 10 most common symptoms that women may experience, in an exclusive look below.

These symptoms can occur during both the earliest and more advanced stages of detection, and can range from intense abdominal and pelvic pains, to irregular menstrual cycles and even excessive hair growth.

Scroll down to go through the list, and please make sure to consult your doctor if you are experiencing severe forms of any of the following symptoms.

1. Frequent Back Pain

There can be many causes for back pain. But if you know for certain that you are not suffering from any physical ailments and discomforts — like ligament strain, osteoporosis, arthritis, or skeletal irregularities — then it’s best to get checked out by your doctor.

Although it’s a symptom that’s common in women who don’t have ovarian cancer, back pain can be cause for concern, according to MedlinePlus.

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Look out for back pain that worsens over time for unknown reasons.

 

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