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Ovarian Cancer

AMBULATORY CARE:

Ovarian cancer

may occur in one or both of your ovaries. Ovaries produce eggs and hormones, such as estrogen and progesterone. These hormones are important in helping the body work correctly.


Common symptoms include the following:

  • Abdominal fullness, bloating, or swelling
  • Loss of appetite or weight loss
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Changes in your menstrual cycle, including abnormal bleeding
  • Abdominal or low back pain
  • A need to urinate frequently

Call 911 for any of the following:

  • You suddenly feel lightheaded and short of breath.
  • You have chest pain when you take a deep breath or cough.
  • You cough up blood.

Seek care immediately if:

  • Your arm or leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.
  • You vomit many times and cannot keep any food or liquids down.

Contact your oncologist if:

  • You have a fever.
  • Your pain is worse or does not go away after you take pain medicine.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Treatment for ovarian cancer

depends on the size of the tumor and stage of the cancer. You may need more than one of the following:

  • Surgery may be needed to remove one or both of your ovaries.
  • Chemotherapy medicines are used to kill cancer cells.
  • Radiation is used to kill cancer cells and to shrink the tumor or tumors with x-rays or gamma rays.

Self-care:

  • Do not smoke. Nicotine can damage blood vessels. increase your risk for new or returning cancer, and delay healing after treatment. Do not use e-cigarettes or smokeless tobacco in place of cigarettes or to help you quit. They still contain nicotine. Ask your healthcare provider for information if you currently smoke and need help quitting.
  • Weigh yourself daily. Weigh yourself in the morning before breakfast. Weight gain can be a sign of extra fluid in your body. Call your healthcare provider if you gain at least 2 pounds in a day.
  • Drink liquids as directed. You may need extra liquid to prevent dehydration. Ask how much liquid to drink each day and which liquids are best for you.
  • Eat enough protein and calories. Foods may taste different during cancer treatment. You may not feel like eating, and you may lose weight. Eat a variety of health foods. Healthy foods include fruits, vegetables, whole-grain breads, low-fat dairy products, beans, lean meats, and fish. Eat small meals every 2 to 3 hours. Ask a dietitian for more information about the best eating plan for you.
  • Exercise as directed. Ask about the best exercise plan for you. Exercise may improve your energy levels and appetite.

Follow up with your oncologist as directed:

You may need to return for more tests or treatment. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

© 2017 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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