Attention, women: You might be missing this common sign of ovarian cancer

When it comes to cancer types that disproportionately affect women, breast cancer gets a lot of buzz. And by all means, continue your regular self-exams and mammograms, please! Still, it’s important to tune in to the signs of ovarian cancer, too. The American Cancer Society reports that ovarian cancer affects over 20,000 women in the U.S. each year, and about 40 women die every day from the disease. But according to new research from Target Ovarian Cancer, most women wouldn’t recognize one major red flag.

The British charity surveyed 1,000 women to determine their knowledge of the risk and protection factors of ovarian cancer. Overall, just one percent knew that feeling the frequent need to urinate is a symptom of the disease. On the other hand, these are the common myths about ovarian cancer you DO need to ignore.

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Why does ovarian cancer make you pee a lot? “Needing to wee more often or more urgently—and indeed, all of the symptoms of ovarian cancer—can occur because a mass in the abdominal area is pushing on the surrounding organs, including over the bladder,” according to Katherine Pinder, Deputy Director of Services at Target Ovarian Cancer.

Granted, there are lots of other reasons for taking a bathroom break more frequently than normal. Increasing your water consumption, becoming pregnant, or suffering from a condition like diabetes can all boost your urge.

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But it’s still important to be aware of the small possibility that your frequent urination could mean something more serious—especially if you’re experiencing other common signs of ovarian cancer like abdominal bloating, appetite loss, or pelvic and/or abdominal pain. If you display any of these symptoms, it’s always best to book an appointment with your doctor or gynecologist as soon as possible. These are the 14 things doctors wish you knew about ovarian cancer.

Ovarian cancer isn’t the only cancer with unusual symptoms. Don’t miss the cancer symptoms that women are likely to ignore.

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[Source: Cosmopolitan UK]

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